I talked with my friend Cashar Evans last night. He has lived in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, on the Outer Banks, since 1972. During that time, he has lived through twenty-two tropical storms and hurricanes. He evacuated twice, both times for monster storms. The rest he sat out. He is as experienced as anybody I know. When I asked what he would do this time, he calmly replied, “Anything around 100 miles per hour is no problem.” He then shared with me the worst part of being in the potential path of a hurricane: “Waiting for a hurricane is like being stalked by a turtle.” In other words, the waiting is the worst part.
We don’t all live in the potential path of a hurricane, but we all know what it is like to be stalked by a turtle. I have friends who have just received devastating news, and they are now living with the inevitability of future events that will be challenging at best, painful at worst. The questions of “when” and “how bad” loom as unanswered, and probably unanswerable. Their journey will be one day at a time. Even as I write this, I know there are dozens, if not hundreds, of readers who will identify with that statement.
I think no one in history has ever understood this better than Jesus. In the conclusion of the sixth chapter of Matthew, he bids us to “not worry about tomorrow…today’s trouble is enough for today.” I don’t think he meant we shouldn’t be watching the weather reports so that we can be prudent about taking shelter from the coming storm. He simply meant that God gives us enough for today, and that by living one day at a time we can trust God to give us enough for tomorrow.
The hurricane that stalks you and me like a turtle is inevitable. Life is full of challenging moments, and we can’t “evacuate” far enough to avoid most of them. What we can do is trust the fact that God gives us what we need one day at a time; and that no matter how strong the storm, in the end God has the final word.
Rev. Don Underwood