have you ever just stood outside and watched a thunderstorm roll in?  smelled the change in the atmosphere?  you almost sense that the earth knows that something violent, powerful and ultimately cleansing is coming.  something of supreme beauty, and ultimately, danger.

have you ever stood outside and felt the first drops, promising the torrents that will come?

have you ever stood there and felt the temperature plunge?  watched the trees as their peaceful slumber is interrupted and they’re transformed from sleeping beauties into a writhing mass of leaves, branches and wind?

thunderstorms in texas are unlike any storms you’ll find on earth.  jade green clouds, a brisk vibrancy on the wind;  the atmosphere itself is almost electric.  its like all the earth stands still in anticipation.

and a thunderstorm at night?  it can leave you breathless.

i’ve had the benefit of driving through some of the craziest storms we’ve had down here.  and although i find them awesome, make no mistake that the damage they can cause, and the tornado’s they can spawn are nothing to be romanced.  they are dangerous, period.

thunderstorms are a part of life, and in as much as they are dangerous, they are beautiful.  they provide light where there was none.

and if you can imagine standing at the top of a precipice, the sun long set… watching a storm roll in.  when it finally arrives, for the briefest of moments, the darkness of night that swallows you whole is pushed away.  lightning flashes.  and for that moment in time, you can see.  you can see where you are, what’s next, and if you’re high enough, what’s to come.

sometimes, we’re blessed with those moments of vivid clarity for our own lives.  moments when, in the midst of the storm, lightning flashes.  and for that nanosecond, everything is bright.  and in some small way, you’re given peace.  you realize that the world, the mountain youre on, or the valley you’re in, are much larger than you are.  you realize that this storm roiling over your head is beyond your capability to control.  you realize how small you are, and how awesome it is to be alive during this time.

even more rare, is when the storm flashes… and we’re not given a glimpse of our lives, but the life of someone else.  in that moment, the darkness is pushed back and we see how amazing their life is.  we see what’s already passed, and what is to come.  we see their future.  the rolling green hills and the mountains that will need climbing.

in that kairos moment, we’re given a glimpse into the life of someone else.  a glimpse into how the King views this person.  not just as she is, but as she can be, as she will be.  and if we allow ourselves, we accept the burden of knowing.  and of praying.  and of supporting this person.  even if it means from afar.

because we realize that we weren’t given this gift of vision, to consume on ourselves.  we realize, i realize… that with this glimpse comes the challenge of praying for her.  and trusting that the King who granted such a wonderful glimpse…. will keep her safe.  because in that split second, something was communicated to us that no amount of words could communicate.  value.  you realize that she’s the alluvial diamond.  that this flash of daylight was a glimpse into her future.  into something that is beyond me.  beyond my capability to understand…. both dangerous, and beautiful.  breathtakingly beautiful.

i realize how much these glimpses mean.  because they are roadsigns, gifts from the King, and a sign that i’m not lost.  yes, the storm may be intense, this valley may be deep, or the mountain may seem unclimbable….

but above the storm exists One who looks down… and controls all.

we we’re born with a knowing that there was more to life than a 9-5 job.  it’s in lifes storms that we discover what that calling really is.

it’s a calling of hope, of passion, of sacrifice and pain and heartache.  it’s a calling to live a dangerous life.  and a life filled with a beauty beyond our wildest dreams.

so it is in His hands that i place her future.  just because i was given the gift of lightning doesnt mean i’m to intrude.  it only means that she’s climbing a mountain, or facing a valley… and she needs someone to pray for her.  so i will.