Photo Helen Boylan, Plymouth Herald
I usually quite like storms. So long as I am inside obviously. I grew up with a Nana who would put blankets on the mirrors and pull us all away from the windows while she covered the budgie’s cage so it is a wonder that I am not completely traumatised when the thunder monster comes to town. Anyway, on Friday evening the South West of England was struck by a storm the like of which I have never seen before and I am over half a century old! I know that I am prone to exaggeration but really, this was immense. It wasn’t so much the thunder which was quite sporadic (well the dog didn’t think it was THAT sporadic) It was the lightning which was intense and constant – flash after flash after flash – no gaps just a continual lighting of the sky. We were chatting in town the next day and someone was saying that they have only seen storms like that in Mediterranean countries. Global Warming? It was certainly unlike anything I have ever seen. If a couple of the spaceships from War of the Worlds had come through the clouds, I wouldn’t have been THAT surprised) FOW1 was watching it while out with his chums. He said that he was enjoying it but kept thinking “What if this isn’t lightning? Is something really unusual happening? Like bombs or something?” We are all a bit jumpy at the moment.
I have seen and read a lot this week about standing firm and not giving in to terrorists. Of course that is all true and admirable and I will sing Oasis songs as defiantly as the next man but it is also surely normal to be upset and uncomfortable and fear for the future. This week 29 Coptic Christians were taken from a bus – men, women, children and killed. Also, over 100 civilians were killed in air strikes in Syria. And, at a time when people should be perfectly entitled to look to their leadership…well you probably know the rest.
If you are as old as me you will probably remember this hymn written by Sunday School Teacher Priscilla Owens and based on Hebrews 6. It’s an old style barnstormer – definitely one to bung your hymn book under your arm and do a bit of clapping. But as well as that there are strong grown up truths here. That things will happen and they will make the very ground under us feel wobbly but we have someone trustworthy and capable and able to see us through.
|Will your anchor hold in the storms of life,
When the clouds unfold their wings of strife?
When the strong tides lift, and the cables strain,
Will your anchor drift or firm remain?
|We have an anchor that keeps the soul
Steadfast and sure while the billows roll,
Fastened to the Rock which cannot move,
Grounded firm and deep in the Savior’s love.