“It’s like this,” he said cupping his left hand. “This is the hand of God.” Raising his right hand with the index finger extended, “This is you,” and he places the finger in the cupped palm. “Life is good. The view is great. Nothing could be better. But, when the storms of life come, and they will come, watch what happens.” He cups the right hand and places it over the left. “God covers you with his hand. You are safe and secure in the hands of God.
“But what happens if you decide you no longer need God’s help?” The speaker takes his right hand and puts two fingers down then “walks” out of the cupped hand and onto the wrist and up the arm. “Now what happens when the storms come, and they will come. You are on your own. You are battered and bruised. You are wounded and broken. You are tossed about not knowing up from down.”
He drops his hands. “Where do you want to be when the storms come, and they will come. I pray that you will put your trust in the hands of your loving heavenly Father. He will protect you and keep you safe in the center of His will.”
I’ve used this illustration many times in impromptu counseling sessions with young adults who are contemplating moving out of the protection of home and into the world. I believe 20 somethings are the most vulnerable age group. That doesn’t mean that this illustration has no meaning for the rest of us. Quite the opposite is true. Any of us at any time can think we can do it on our own. We can wander away from God’s plan and protection thinking we are ok. It’s only when the storms come that we begin to realize that we are not where we are supposed to be. Oh, we may survive a storm or two, maybe even several storms, but eventually we will weaken and falter.
If we are smart enough, we will call on God; we will cry out to Him in our distress. We may think we are unworthy of His help, but we do it out of desperation. We finally realize that, without Him, all is lost. In that moment we find that though we have wandered far, God has not left us. He has followed us waiting for that moment when we turn around and see that His palm is still there. With His other hand, He gently, lovingly lifts our broken spirits and places us back in our safe place, then He covers us with that hand and protects us from the storm while we heal in the warmth of His love.
If you are in that storm right now, stop. Turn around. God is there.
If you have never experienced God’s love and protection, now is the time to start. He has been waiting for you, too. It doesn’t make any difference what you have done, how great or how small a sin you have committed nor how unworthy you think you are. He loves you and longs to pour His love all over you. You can bask in the sunshine of His love and grace and mercy right now. All you have to do is ask.
In either case, today is a good day to begin.