It was one of those dreary fall days. The sky was a dark gray, and I knew we were in for a heavy rain storm. The wind was blowing so hard the branches on all of the trees in my yard were swaying and losing all their leaves. I was grateful I didn’t have to go out of the house. As I sat at the window in my living room, gazing out at the leaves dancing in the wind before touching the ground, I thought about a time many years ago, when I was terrified being on the freeway in severe winds just like this one.
My husband and I were going on a trip to Florida passing through Colorado, stopping for a couple of days to visit my son in Denver. The weather was beautiful when we left Denver, but when we reached Kansas, the wind picked up, getting worse as we drove east. The gusts were extremely strong too, and at times I could feel the car shuttering. I became very fearful, and I asked my husband to slow down. Reluctantly, he did, but felt I was foolish to be afraid, and told me so. That wasn’t much help, and I knew I had to do some serious prayerful work in order to align myself with God, so I could get free of my fear.
My books (the Bible and Science and Health with Key to Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, and some Christian Science pamphlets) were in my suitcase in the back of the car where I couldn’t get to them, so I had to pray with what I knew from memory. The first thing that came to mind was that God was in control, and if anything happened, He would give everyone involved the wisdom and intelligence to know what to do. That was a comforting thought.
The Lord’s Prayer came next. I went over it, stopping at each phrase and sentence, thinking about its meaning. That took a lot of time, and I felt quite good when I was through. Then a strong gust came along, and fear took over again. Once more I begged my husband to slow down. I knew he was annoyed with me, but he slowed down a bit anyway, and I went back to gazing out the window, staring hard trying to see if the wind had stopped. When I noticed it hadn’t, and all the sagebrush was still blowing all over, sometimes taking flight, as it does in strong winds, I knew I had lots more prayerful work to do.
I reminded myself again that God was in control, and told myself that nothing was going to happen. After all – wasn’t God more powerful than the wind?
The 23rd Psalm was very helpful at this time, and I was glad I had memorized it. Another thing that gave me some peace, was from an article I had once read. It stated that since the real man is made in God’s image and likeness, as stated in the first chapter of Genesis, he can never be subject to danger. Since God knows no fear man, his reflection, is unafraid.
Everything was beginning to get better. Then – another strong gust, and I was right back to where I started. I had visions of the wind blowing our car into the other lane, and causing an accident. How silly!! This has never happened that I know of, but fear can make you conjure up all kinds of strange scenarios.
Again, I pleaded with my husband to slow down, but instead he told me to take out one of our tapes, and play some music. “That will calm you down,” he said. Nothing but the wind stopping would calm me down, but I reached into the bag anyway, pulled out a tape, and put it on. Then I went back to staring out the window trying hard to see if there were any results from my prayers, but everything still looked just the same.
This time I tried having a chat with God. “What am I doing wrong?” I asked. “Why aren’t you stopping the wind, so I can get rid of this fear?” I didn’t hear any answer, so I went back to trying to see if there had been any changes, but everything was the same as it had been a few minutes before. “God,” I asked, “what do you want me to do to be rid of this fear?” My answer came quickly as my attention was immediately drawn to the music on the tape. I had unknowingly put on a tape with hymns, and I heard this beautiful male voice singing, “Trust in the Lord. His name be ever blessed with peace and happiness.“
So that was my answer!!! My problem was in not trusting God to help me. I was doing all that praying, but every time the wind was gusting, I became fearful. Where was my trust? Why, I was even telling God how I wanted Him to solve this problem by thinking all I needed was for Him to stop the wind, or at least slow it down, and I wouldn’t be afraid anymore. But that’s not the way it works. Stopping the wind may have gotten rid of my fear for a while, but it really would have just postponed it until the next wind storm. Now I felt that God was telling me, through a beautiful hymn, that I should trust in Him. It worked!! The fear vanished completely, and a feeling of calm and joy took over. Further on in the hymn, it says, “He orders all our ways. To Him we send our praise”. Oh, how many, many times have I expressed gratitude, and praised God for this wonderful healing!!!!
The wind was still blowing hard, and the gusts were every bit as strong, but I didn’t care; the fear was gone, and the remainder of the trip was spent in complete peace and harmony. My husband and I took many trips across the country through the years that followed, and drove through many wind storms, but they no longer bothered me.
The warmth of the sun on my arm brought me back to the present. The wind had stopped, the sun was shining, and the dark clouds had left, leaving behind a beautiful blue sky. The rain must have changed course, since everything in my yard was still dry. The trees were bare now, except for a few stubborn leaves hanging on refusing to let go. Leaves thickly covered my lawn. I’ll call the gardener in the morning to come and rake them up.