Monday, October 3, 2011

What's With All The Storms?

Living in Bermuda, we have to deal with our share of storms. Our hurricane season 'officially' runs from June 1 to November 30th. That's a long time. That's potentially a lot of storms headed our way.
We are a tiny island in the middle of the Atlantic. Think about it. One big one and we could be gone.
Thankfully, our forefathers had the fortitude to plan ahead. Instead of building homes from wood, as would have been the case with other settlers in other continents, our homes were all built using Bermuda limestone. Our roofs are designed to stand against harsh weather, and also act as a run off to the tank below the house, where we collect our drinking water. Yes, it's rainwater. And no, we don't purify it. Well, I am sure nowadays some people do, but it's perfectly safe not to, I promise.

This is what a typical Bermuda house looks like.

So, we have pretty sturdy buildings to protect us from the storm. Unlike our forefathers, we have very advance warning when a storm is kicking up the Atlantic and heading our way. As I write this, we're keeping an eye on Ophelia, another hurricane that appears to be moseying toward us.
When a storm does hit, however, there isn't much we can do except wait it out.
Our last big hurricane was Fabian, in 2005. He was a CAT4, and a direct hit. It was bad.
Bad, but not devastating. When I look at places like Haiti and Louisiana, I'm thankful we withstood that storm the way we did.
But what do you do when you're in the middle of it?
The wind and rain lash against the windows, trees bent over as far as they can go, some whizz past the house, unable to withstand the strength of the storm. Inevitably the power goes out at some point and it starts to get hot. Hot and sticky. And maybe a little frightening, because you don't really know what you're going to be faced with when its over.
And so we wait.

Does this sound at all familiar?
Perhaps you have never had to deal with a hurricane, but have you ever been thrust into the middle of a personal storm? A storm so powerful it sent you to your knees and there you stayed, waiting it out. Waiting. Trusting.
Not knowing the outcome.
I have experienced this in my personal life as well as my writing life. I've been through storms that I was afraid would do irrevocable damage. I didn't want to go through them. Like turbulence on an airplane, I wanted to shout, "Stop it, already! Go around, go away!!"
But you're stuck in your seat, unable to move, unable to do anything but wait. And pray.

It's tempting to rail against the coming storm. Prepare and promise yourself it's really not going to be that bad. But deep down, you know it's bad. It's scary, it's out of control, and it's going to do some damage.
And you have no choice but to sit through it.

I think God gives us those storms for a reason. Not to harm us or make us think we must have done something terrible to deserve such punishment, but rather to show us that He is still in control.
When we see a hurricane headed our way, we pray.
We trust God for our lives, our safety and the outcome.
When we see a personal storm headed our way, we must do the same.
Riding it out is not fun, but what a blessing to know that we're never alone.

Are you in the midst of a storm today? How can we pray for you?

Educated in Bermuda, England and Canada, Catherine holds a degree in English from the University of Toronto. When she’s not at the computer working on her next story, you can find her taking her Border Collie for long walks or tending to her roses and orchids. Catherine and her husband live on the beautiful island of Bermuda, with their two college-aged children. Catherine is a member of Romance Writers of America, and American Christian Fiction Writers, and is a founding member of International Christian Fiction Writers. Catherine’s debut novel Yesterday’s Tomorrow, released in March 2011 through OakTara Publishers. Catherine’s next novel, Hidden in the Heart, will be available in the near future, also through OakTara.


  1. During Bible Study last week we were talking of the misery of waiting for the unknown. Waiting for the phone call, waiting for the doctor's report, waiting for the prodigal to come home. Once the storm hits, the bad news delivered, we can cope, but the waiting can be paralyzing.

  2. Great analogy Cathy. I felt just like that only a year ago. I felt like I was holding on for dear life, afraid the "storm" would take me down - that I wouldn't survive. But I did. I held on and, praise God, the skies are clear and blue on the other side. Trusting in God is the only way through. :)

  3. Got a massive storm going on right now, some of it due to my own health, most because of some things my husband is dealing with. This one is definitely a Cat 5, and I'm getting tired of being lashed with all the metaphorical wind and rain. Feels like the house is going to come down ...

  4. Dear God, please hold Stacy and her husband in the cleft of the Rock and shelter them there with your hand. You know what is going on in their lives, and you know the plans you have for them to give them hope and a future. We trust you for them right now. Strengthen their faith. Fill them with the joy of your presence even in the midst of this storm. Hold up their "house" with the power of your might. May all around them shout "Glory!" when they see what you are accomplishing. In the name of our Lord Jesus who suffered for us even to the point of giving his life. Amen.

  5. Cathy, I would love to see a novel set in Bermuda during a hurricane while the characters are grappling with their own internal storm.

  6. Cathy, thanks for your encouraging post :) I needed to hear this today.