Isn’t that what benches are for? We find them in parks, on busy street corners and in places where you are encouraged to take a moment and sit. Taking in the beauty that’s around you – in the people that walk by and in the vistas laid out before you. Places which speak to you and take your breath away, a sunset, a waterfall – a mountainside oasis.
Sometimes we are perched beside the ocean, and witness the storm rolling in – we recognize the darkened sky, we feel the wind whip up and we see the rain along the horizon. There we are, present and watching as the approaching storm tumbles in and we continue to sit – and wait.
I don’t know about you, but I sure have a few storms in my life. Storms I expected to head on out to sea, blow over, move on and dwindle off into a small rain cloud rather than an ongoing monsoon. But here they are, dodging me, not letting me go and becoming a source of constant pain. Why would I want to wait for that? Seems to me I’d want to run!
Yet, here I am.
I know the signs. Like when I sit on that bench and see the rain clouds moving in, I sense a storm brewing. So too, I witness the relational dynamics that toggle my horizon askew as I see a storm rising within. The question is – am I ready?
Am I ready to face the storm?
Am I ready to fight the battle? Am I ready to stand firm and undergo whatever the storm clouds bring? Am I ready to be still and ride out the storm? Perhaps your storm doesn’t come with pouring rain and thunder, but with subtle words and inaction. Maybe it’s not the beating rain upon your back but the constant subtle drip of an unsatisfied life. Regardless of what’s on your horizon, and what you see, there is one truth that anchors your soul.
He knows what you struggle with, knows where you fall and how you do. He knows how tired you can be, how worn out you can become and loves you anyway. No matter how you have acted. No matter what you have done. No matter what you will do. Jesus loves you. YOU. Yes, you.
So sit with Him.
See those storm clouds coming and call out in the only way you know how. Holler to Him. Cry out to Him. Whisper to Him. In whatever way you speak – speak. Just go to Him. Him. Jesus Christ who offers hope in a darkened world. Jesus Christ who promises to love you even as the storm blows.
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30
Sometimes as we sit – we see.
The longer I sit in a storm the clearer my vision can become – eventually. Rather than wishing for the storm to pass we need to keep company with Jesus. He asks me to get away with Him and in doing so I will recover my life. Getting away with Jesus is as simple, and as difficult – as being still with Him and waiting on His timing.
Waiting might be what we are called to do. As we sit by the sea andsee the storm rage on, it can call us to drink in the creation that affirms one thing – our Creator. We are not alone in our storm. We are invited to sit with Him and learn the unforced rhythms of grace. So grab a bench, a chair, any perch will do.
Peterson, Eugene H. The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language. Colorado Springs: NavPress, 2002.