Tuesday, December 8, 2009


The wind is gusting outside. The gusts have reached 70mph. In some areas, they've been as high as 90mph. That air is around us all the time, and yet, we only notice it when it's affecting us in some way. I notice it when it's blowing too hard. I notice it when it's too hot or too cold. I notice that air when my lungs can get enough inside of them.

Faith: Belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence.

"We cannot see the wind, but we can feel the effects of the wind. Likewise, we cannot see God, but we can feel the effects of His presence.

When I feel the effects of the wind, how to I respond? When it's a refreshing breeze on a hot day, I respond with joy. When it's a 90mph wind gust, I curse that wind. When God breathes His breath onto me, how do I respond? When He blesses me, I rejoice. When He allows hardship into my life...do I curse Him or continue to praise Him?

Roofs, sheds, buildings, power lines and street signs were destroyed today in El Paso. I can't imagine how much more destruction has occurred just minutes away in a city largely made of cardboard. But, I know the people of Juarez and the families for whom we build. I know that today, in the midst of hurricane force winds, that they are praying to God. They are praying for His rescue and security when the world cannot offer it. They rest in Him in a way I don't know if I'll ever truly understand. It's my prayer that God will teach me that lesson and humble this old heart that often falls into the ridiculous belief that I can do things on my own, without His hand guiding me.

And as I look back today on the past year of my own life, I can see both the refreshing breezes and torrential gusts of God's breath. I felt that pleasant breeze the day I married Jason and the day we welcomed Pancake into our home. I felt it when the Family Outreach Program overflowed with donations, and I felt it when Francisca & Jose received their new home because God broke people's hearts for them. But the gusts were there too. I felt the gust of God's lessons when blood clots blocked the breaths I could take. My spirit was blown over in grief at the loss of my mom.

The roofs blown off the houses today were not on tight enough. The sheds blown over were not secure to a foundation. The power lines were weakly connected to the poles. The street signs were poorly installed. The gusts of wind today tested the strength of these things, and the weak did not survive. I believe, God allows the gusts of in our lives to test how firmly we are secured to the One who cannot be moved.

Today, while outside the winds are blowing, my heart breaks for the people of Juarez who are not safe from it; but at the same time, I am overwhelmed with humility knowing they are relying on their faith in an amazing way.

When the air is still, both outside and in my heart...will I remember to be thankful? I hope so.