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Storm on the Horizon

What a majestic scene. 

The rugged hills on the horizon frame the grassy rolling vale in stark contrast. Ancient oaks stand like naked soldiers on guard amongst the boulders strewn about the valley. Their branches bear the scars of time. They’ve weathered many a storm. There is beauty in the harshness of this wintery view. 

As I’m watching, a thin sliver of white appears above the hills. It grows as the angst in my heart deepens. The storm clouds are once again gathering on my horizon. Another storm is building, one we’ve been watching it form from afar and now it’s drawing close. There will be no “blindside” this time. No, we’ve been waiting and wondering about when. 

And once again, I see my feelings reflected in the panorama surrounding me. It speaks the words I cannot say, it reflects truth I cannot know. It portrays the depth and breadth of the “too much” that I cannot hold, nor let go. It’s as if in His great compassion, God is says, “I see you” “I know.” He shows me who I am. But even more, who He is.

The fog begins to consumes the valley. 

The clouds move swiftly now, and soon the hilltops are enveloped and the sky becomes blotchy gray. And odd as it is, there is no wind blowing the clouds along. It’s as if they have a life of their own… 


And as I hang up the phone the vastness of the grief threatens to breach, but instead I capture the clouds as they loom overhead and, like an onlooker, I document my sorrow as I see it unfold before my eyes... Even still, there is something comforting about those naked trees being enveloped by the looming storm. I’m captivated by them. They are stoic and secure. They have stood steadfast no matter what’s come. They gave no way. The storms either passed through them snapping away weak branches or went around. But the trees did not give up their ground. As they’ve grown they split boulders and encased fence posts, spread their branches wide and driven their roots deep and so have grown into mighty testaments. 

I want to be like that. I want to be so grounded that nothing moves me. That storms and winds may wreak havoc around me but I shall be unmoved. I want to tower over my troubles. It is their present form of bare silent stillness that encourages me, not the beauty of their summer lushness.

Here’s the thing about winter, it strips us bare and exposes who we really are. There is no hiding behind spring blooms or summer shade or the showy colors of fall. No, winter reveals our structure, our soundness, our steadfastness, and even our scars… 

Scars that chronicle our battles, our victories, our losses. Scars that tell our story. Scars that become part of our beauty. Enough time and most will become mere etchings, adding character, if you will.

(And sometimes they bring a new perspective and allow us to see beyond ourselves...)

Another thing about winter is when you least expect it, the dreariness is overtaken with beauty. The drab gray of winter is transformed, its nakedness blanketed in perfect white. Its rawness hidden. Hope restored.

This is what I hope to see in this storm. A fresh blanket of pure driven snow to soften this winter’s harshness. A preparation for new life that will come as this season passes. 


And I am reminded of the precious gift I’ve been given in the midst of this most difficult wintery season. Each call and text a chance to say “I love you” - a chance to say our last goodbye…

Written as we walked the hospice journey with my Dad, my hero, my friend - John Miller. He passed into eternity with great grace and now is alive with his Savior Jesus Christ. Dad, as you taught us, we've turned the page and have begun a new chapter. A new season, is upon us now, and even though we miss you, we walk victorious, we walk in hope.  







  1. Beautiful! Poignant. Vivid imagery of the season through which we just walked. Thank you for giving this gift to the world.

  2. Beautiful!!! Thanks for sharing your heart and loving spirit ! ❣️


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