Ah, Spring Break. A reason to strap your kids in the car and listen to them repeatedly ask the universal question…
Are we there yet?
My husband and I seized the opportunity (and low gas prices) and headed toward the mountains for some serious family time and ridiculously sore legs—as we’d be teaching the littles to ski for the first time.
Road trips are their own thing, aren’t they? After 26 bathroom breaks, 42 snacks, and a zillion songs, the kiddos were silent. I use that word loosely, of course, as they were probably sleeping or watching a movie (thank you Jesus for modern technology and headphones).
With rare peace on earth, or at least in our SUV, we decided to do some leisurely reading. And by reading, I really mean listening—because HELLO twenty-first century and audio books.
Take the Stairs is a popular book by author and inspirational speaker Rory Vaden. The main idea is that successful people take the stairs (work their tails off) while others are still looking for the escalator (searching for a shortcut/handout/leg-up). It’s a good read, or listen, if you’re into that sort of thing.
One metaphor from the book that stuck in my mind was strangely about a cow, a buffalo, and a storm.
“What cows do is very natural. Cows sense the storm coming from the west and so they start to try to run toward the east. The only problem with that is that if you know anything about cows you know they aren’t very fast. So the storm catches up with the cows rather quickly. And without knowing any better the cows continue to try to outrun the storm. But instead of outrunning the storm they actually run right along with the storm. Maximizing the amount of pain and time and frustration they experience from that storm!”
“What buffalo do on the other hand is very unique for the animal kingdom. Buffalo wait for the storm to cross right over the crest of the peak of the mountaintop and as the storm rolls over the ridge the buffalo turn and charge directly into the storm. Instead of running east away from the storm they run west directly at the storm. By running at the storm they run straight through it. Minimizing the amount of pain and time and frustration they experience from that storm.”
- Cows run away from and with the storm.
- Buffalo run straight into and through the storm.
Like it or not, we ALL have storms. We’re either coming out of a storm, going into a storm, or smack in the middle of a howler at any point in time. While storms are inevitable, we do get a say by our reaction.
It seems like it would be easier, doesn’t it? To simply turn and run. I’m a peacemaker and an includer, so my initial reaction is likely to bolt, to hide, to avoid it altogether, or possibly to cry alone in the shower. But like those silly cows, I end up sopping wet and miserable for a prolonged amount of time.
Responding like a buffalo, on the other hand, takes bravery and courage. It’s hard and intimidating to face a storm head on; to bear the brunt of pain. But that’s how we can get through it.
Maybe you made a huge mistake. Let someone down. Hurt someone you love.
Face the storm.
Maybe you’re sinking in unknowns. Scared of what could happen. Terrified of the “what if’s.”
Face the storm.
Maybe you’ve been running or hiding from your choices, a broken relationship, or an ongoing issue.
Face the storm.
The key is: we’re never alone—even when all seems to be thrashing and swirling and pounding around us. We can face the storm with confidence knowing that God cares even more about our situation, kids, marriage, job, friendship, fill-in-the-blank than we do. He goes before us, sticks beside us, and guards the way after us.
All we have to do is call on His name.
And with Him? We really can face any storm.
“Lord, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He calmed the storm to a whisper and stilled the waves.” (Psalms 107:28-29)