I’m a Connecticut girl, born and raised. Now in Connecticut, we see a lot of extreme weather – ice storms, blizzards, below zero temperatures, heat waves, and even the occasional tropical storm/hurricane. But, we don’t do tornados. Well, at least not until last week. 

Five, that’s right, five tornados ripped through a small portion of Connecticut, leaving mass destruction in its path. And you guessed it, my town was one of the worst towns hit. Thankfully, besides losing power and a few downed tree limbs, my property was left untouched. But this was not the case for many of my family and friends who still, over a week later, are trying to figure out how to clean up the mess. 

That night, my kids and I were minutes away from heading out to our evening activities. The weather channel mentioned that some severe thunderstorms would be rolling through the area. But, who knew the magnitude of that warning!

An unusual breeze started to pick up, and the sky turned a funny shade of gray. Then, an alert on my phone warned us to take shelter immediately. Off to the basement we went, and within seconds we lost power. I peered through the windows trying to see what was happening. 

Suddenly, a giant wall of darkness loomed over my street. Hail pelted my house and windows, as lightening flickered in the darkness. Violent winds shook the house and tremendous amounts of rain poured from the sky. 

There wasn’t much warning at all, and I certainly didn’t have time to prepare in that moment. Fortunately, we have a generator, bottled water, and lanterns, but I didn't feel prepared at all. Sound familiar? The storms of life that we walk through never give us much warning either. They just happen. 

Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.  1 Peter 4:12

I'd like to tell you that trials and tribulations won't come our way, but there is no truth in that. The Bible tells us to expect them. And often, there is no warning – no Doppler radar or text alerts telling you to take shelter and retreat. So how do you prepare for these moments? 

The key is what you do before the storm hits. How you weather a storm correlates directly to how you prepare for it. Ladies, we are living in uncertain times. The news is inundated with reports of forest fires, volcanos, acts of terrorism and so much more. Add to that the difficulties and challenges we each face with our health and personal relationships, and one thing is clear. We need to be in sync with the Holy Spirit. 

We need to hear His voice every single day. In fact, I would encourage you to start your day in prayer and not to move on until you receive a fresh Word from Him. Let it overwhelm you, change you, and warn you for what lies ahead. 

I know we are all busy. We have jobs, family, school, even church that pulls at our time. We can easily become anxious and consumed with the cares of life. But, we need to carve out time each day where we can spend quiet time in the Lord’s presence so that He can do a work in our hearts and minds. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to get caught in another “suddenly” moment.

Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap. Luke 21:34