When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through the fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.
I watched a documentary recently about a man who had forgone civilization and chosen to live on his own in the wilderness. Everything he had he had built and gathered by his own hands. He cut down trees and built himself a small log house and anything he ate, he had to go out and either hunt or gather it for himself. There was no Costco or Walmart down the street to pick up his weekly groceries. You could tell his clothes were a little tattered and worn yet they still kept him warm and protected from the weather. He’d lived on his own for countless years and survived, truly in my eyes an incredible feat. During the show he was coming back from one of his daily hunting trips, but where his small wooden home had once stood now lay nothing but rubble and ash. His home had caught fire and burned up during the course of the day.
“I need a minute” he told the cameraman as he walked away to the edge of the forest clearing. He stood there for a quite a while it seemed just looking up at the sky. When he returned there were tears in his eyes. That small log cabin was more than just a structure to live in, to him it represented who he was and who he had become as a person over the years. He couldn’t just call his homeowners insurance and have someone rebuilt it while they put him up in an extended stay hotel. The man covered his face in shame as the tears slowly trickled down his rosy wind-burned cheeks. “Tell me what you’re feeling right now?” the cameraman asked. His response blew me away. He bent down into the piles of ash that were once his home and picked up a single hatchet and said, “I am blessed.” The cameraman didn’t know what to say, “I don’t understand?”, he asked. “Your house just burned to the ground.” The old man gripped the hatchet tightly as he shook it in the air towards the sky, “I have so much to be thankful for.”
What this cameraman didn’t see was the old man saw past the current situation. He knew it could’ve been worse after all he could’ve been in that house when it caught fire and burned up. He also knew the hatchet was his promise from God. Even though his houses had burned God gave him the one tool he needed to rebuild it. This man chose to praise God through the Storm.
© Lena Wright 09/29/2015