Sunday, March 22, 2020

Walking Through the Storms of Life

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Nothing can ruffle our feathers like a storm. And some seasons of life bring a series of storms. With all that’s going on around us with Covid19, we’re in the middle of a big one. 

However storms don’t have to be hurricane size to be exhausting. Sometimes it’s the tiny, ongoing circumstances that sap us the most. Like single drops of water in series have the ability to wear away solid rock, so these recurring events deplete our energy and—in the process—draw our focus away from God. 

Doing life apart from God is the true source of ruffled exhaustion. And the tiny disturbances offer the strongest temptation to handle life ourselves. Most of us have learned to take the big stuff to God. But we still hesitate to bother Him with the small. 

One of the most intense struggles in my life came while my dad was in the final stages of Alzheimer’s. My mother was his primary caregiver, but my sister and I were actively helping support her. I was under contract and finishing a book. 

I’d done what I thought was a pretty good job of turning over my stress to God. I was prayed up in regard to Daddy’s illness, my mother’s exhaustion, and my book. The rest of life I was handling on my own. Only I wasn’t. It seemed the smallest issue would set my feathers flying in all different directions as I pecked at the people who were trying to help. 

After one particularly trying morning at the assisted living facility, my family urged me to take a break and go get lunch—alone. At the time I thought they were giving me space. Looking back I realize they were probably trying to get a break from me.

I hopped into my car and almost immediately the irritations seemed to mount. I was almost out of gas, there was a line at the gas station, the pump was out of receipt paper. Traffic was bad, drivers were rude, and the drive-through line at my favorite fast food restaurant wrapped around the building. I didn’t care. I wanted chicken and chicken I was determined to have—even if I had to wait an hour. 

Parking and going inside would have solved the long line problem, but I was a mess and I knew it. I didn’t want to show up in a public place with rumpled clothes and rumpled feathers. I wanted something in life to be easy, but it didn’t seem that was going to happen.

The drive through line eventually divided into two lanes and of course I chose the lane that never seemed to move. For some reason, that was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Sitting in my car, I lost it. I cried. I ranted. I’m ashamed to say I think I even raised my fist at God. I accused Him of picking on me, of forgetting me—the impossibility of someone picking on me while simultaneously ignoring me wasn’t something I considered in that middle of feather-flying fit.

As my sobs turned to hiccups, I felt the voice of God whispering into my soul. He reminded me that I’d been trying to handle all the details of my crazy life on my own—apart from Him. He gently stroked my feathers and reminded me He cared about all of my life, not just the big stuff. I felt peace beginning to return, but I asked Him for some confirmation. I wanted something odd, but so obviously from Him, I would know for sure that He did care about all the unimportant—exhausting—parts of my crazy life. 

I pulled to the window to pay and pick up my order and the clerk gave me a tentative smile. I cringed because I realized a lot of people must have noticed my tantrum. “The lady in front of you paid for your order. But she was adamant I give you this message. She wanted you to know that whatever you’re going through right now, God knows, and He cares.”

Somehow I managed to thank her through my tears and drove off. I parked at the edge of the lot because I was crying so hard I couldn’t see to drive. But it was worth the kerfuffle. God had reminded me—in a way I’ll never forget—that He cares about everything—tiny and big—that is happening in my life.

I learned three important things that day.

Peace never comes to us apart from God

If I am not in close communion with God, then nothing goes smoothly. When I flutter away, feathers ruffled by emotions and circumstances, I know that I have drifted from the one who makes life smooth. I’ve wandered away from my anchor, my foundation, my Jesus.

"Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful” (John 14:27).

Peace is an on-going process

Finding rest in God’s peace it is not a permanent condition. Just as my circumstances constantly change, so does my quest for peace and the steps I take to renew it. But my ability to live in it depends on me, never on God’s whim.

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass” (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24).

Peace is attainable

God is faithful and able to do what He promises. He promises us peace in every circumstance and I am living proof that He is able. 

How do we really know it’s attainable? This is the verse I go to when I need to remember that God and God alone is my sustainer. 

“I love Thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies” (Psalm 18:1-3).

So where ever you are today, God is there with you. His peace is available to each of us, all we need to do is look up and see Him enveloping us in His love. 

*reprinted with permission from UnRuffled: Thriving in the Midst of Chaos, Bold Vision Books, 2019

Walking Through the Storms of Life - @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Edie Melson is a woman of faith with ink-stained fingers observing life through the lens of her camera. No matter whether she’s talking to writers, entrepreneurs, or readers, her first advice is always “Find your voice, live your story.” As an author, blogger, and speaker she’s encouraged and challenged audiences across the country and around the world. Her numerous books reflect her passion to help others develop the strength of their God-given gifts and apply them to their lives. Connect with her on her website,  through FacebookTwitter and Instagram.


  1. Edie,

    thank you for this transparent and helpful post. Each of us face storms in life but where do we turn for help? Hopefully to the One who carries us in His arms if needed.

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  2. We all try to control things. And we all get mad at God. But I love how He always gives us a hug, and reminds us how much He loves us, and how He has things in His hands. Just like this post. Thank you sweet friend.

  3. I love this, Edie. I can feel the frustration and then the peace. I wake up every morning and say "I choose to trust in Jesus." If I didn't I'd be an anxious mess. Thank you for sharing this timely message.

    1. Penny, thanks for sharing that insight. It truly is a choice we make every day! Blessings, E

  4. I make the mistake of trying to handle things on my own. As soon as I go to God, I feel comfort. Thank you for sharing your heart with us.

    1. Melissa, I still have to remind myself to unclench my fist and let God take the lead! Blessings, E

  5. Just what I needed to read this morning. Thank you, Edie!

    1. Ingmar, I'm glad it encouraged you! Blessings, E

  6. Thank you Edie. I needed that just now.

    1. Marie, thank you for stopping by! Blessings, E

  7. Thank you for sharing a very humbling moment in your life. Who knew that that frustrating day would one day bless so many people. I had that kind of day yesterday, and God has been reminding me of His presence from the time I woke up this morning. Bless you!

    1. Jackie, I'm sorry you had a rough day yesterday, Blessings, E

  8. Thank you, Edie. You speak for many of us. God is always available and able. I need to not just remember that, but actively seek and rest in Him. This week Scripture reminded me to DELIGHT in Him.

    1. Holli, thank you for the encouragement! Blessings, E

  9. This blog is one that I save in my inbox until I can savor it, or save it to my bookmarks. Today, I'm savoring. Thank you so much. I was in tears thinking about how the last six weeks have been after my dad had a stroke on Feb.16. This was exactly what I needed to read today! Bless you as you minister to so many of us every day!