Praise the Lord !
Praise the Lord from the heavens!
Praise him from the skies!
2 Praise him, all his angels!
Praise him, all the armies of heaven!
3 Praise him, sun and moon!
Praise him, all you twinkling stars!
4 Praise him, skies above!
Praise him, vapors high above the clouds!
5 Let every created thing give praise to the Lord ,
for he issued his command, and they came into being.
6 He set them in place forever and ever.
His decree will never be revoked.
7 Praise the Lord from the earth,
you creatures of the ocean depths,
8 fire and hail, snow and clouds,s
wind and weather that obey him,
9 mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars,
10 wild animals and all livestock,
small scurrying animals and birds,
11 kings of the earth and all people,
rulers and judges of the earth,
12 young men and young women,
old men and children.
13 Let them all praise the name of the Lord .
For his name is very great;
his glory towers over the earth and heaven!
14 He has made his people strong,
honoring his faithful ones—
the people of Israel who are close to him.
Praise the Lord !
What more can I say? Our vacation was glorious. If there had been a way to consume the tropical, flowery scents around us, I would have eaten until I burst. As it was, I stood on the shore, taking in the majestic scene as far as my eye could see, and I shivered with awe. It was our last evening, and I expected that I would feel sad about leaving. Instead, I told my daughter that this was one of those moments that we try to take a picture with our hearts. I will engrave that sunset on my memory — may it ever serve as a reminder of the glory, majesty, creativity and splendor of the Creator!
Every single day in that paradise had storms. Tropical raindrops are bigger and wetter than the ones that usually fall on us in North Texas. Even the rain smells like salt. Salt water is corrosive, and residents must be very vigilant to keep rust at bay. Everywhere on the carefully maintained resort was evidence of past furies; Hurricane Charley devastated the region in 2004 with such force that the shape of the coast itself changed, and a new island was born. The peaceful lushness of the island is bought with a price.
Just as my peace with our Lord was bought with a price.
To experience myself the way God made me to be, I must also endure storms that make my legs grow heavy and whip my hair into my eyes so that I cannot see clearly. Then, at those moments of helplessness, I find that the Lord is right there leading me through. He does not shield me from the furies of the world, but He never leaves me alone.
I was highly anxious about making this trip. Planes are not my favorite modes of transportation. I was so weary from the noise of travel that I wished my husband would turn off the radio once we got into a car. I craved silence. Instead I got the heavy pounding of fat raindrops on the roof. We traveled through such a heavy wall of rain that light literally could not penetrate. There were islands just offshore that our eyes could not see due to the rain. My eyes traveled the horizon, looking for waterspouts and other such anxious monsters. But we persevered. My husband kept driving. We kept trusting. And the reward we received was this:
Whatever storm may be pounding you, rest assured that it will pass by. I’m left with a peaceful realization that the storms the Lord is allowing in my life are shaping me, just as Hurricane Charlie shaped the coastline of Captiva. To my Creator I am an expanse of sand just waiting to be made into something that glorifies Him.