Monday, June 1, 2009

The Outer Fringe

I’ve recently been suffering the repercussions of taking a vacation, and thus have had little time to listen or write (or anything else, for that matter). But there have been a series of intense summer storms in the past few weeks, quite delightful in a region that has recently suffered from a record-breaking drought. For a girl who first encountered God in the (sometimes terrifying) skies that hung over the Midwestern planes or the Southeastern pine forests, there is little that awakens my soul more than some binding lightning or deafening thunder.

In these storms, a passage from Job that I first encountered when I was fifteen during the hurricane season that happened to coincide with the summer I first read through the Bible keeps coming to mind. In the absence of a more beautifully poetic way to express the same thought, I’ll just let Job take it from here. (For Bible geeks out there who are surprised at my sudden use of the NIV, I have to use the words as I first heard them eleven years ago. Don't lynch me.)
The dead are in deep anguish,
those beneath the waters and all that live in them.
Death is naked before God;
Destruction lies uncovered.
He spreads out the northern skies over empty space;
he suspends the earth over nothing.
He wraps up the waters in his clouds,
yet the clouds do not burst under their weight.
He covers the face of the full moon,
spreading his clouds over it.
He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters
for a boundary between light and darkness.
The pillars of the heavens quake,
aghast at his rebuke.
By his power he churned up the sea;
by his wisdom he cut Rahab to pieces.
By his breath the skies became fair;
his hand pierced the gliding serpent.
And these are but the outer fringe of his works;
how faint the whisper we hear of him!
Who then can understand the thunder of his power?
(This photo, incidentally, comes courtesy of a friend of mine who is currently storm-chasing as she works on her PhD in meteorology. This blogpost goes out to her, with my prayers that lots of minimally-harmful tornadoes fill the end of her trip.)

1 comment:

Casey said...

Great post, Emily! And thanks for the shout-out, too :) No tornadoes yet, but this weekend is showing some good promise! Thanks again for praying for me, I really appreciate it.