My iPhone has a photo app feature that’s similar to those on Facebook and other social media apps. It showcases memories from holidays past and photos from a year ago with the label “On This Day.” While I’m always interested to see this prompt, I was startled to be reminded that it was “on this day” just a year ago that a flood took out two-thirds of my house in 45 minutes. It was a flood that changed and transformed my family and our home in many ways.
Bitter Sweet Memories
Talking with a friend about this, I recalled that we lived in a hotel for three months and that hotel life quickly lost its glamour. I also remembered that one evening there was a fire in the hotel and, as we watched the fire trucks arrive, I realized we had lived through a flood and a fire in just weeks. I recalled that we had lost very little of our personal belongings but almost all of our personal comfort as our home became a construction site, and our dark hotel room left us longing for the comforts we had previously known at home.
I remembered how the reconstruction took so much longer than we expected, testing our resolve. I recalled each of my boys crying for different reasons, and even my husband and I breaking down on more than one occasion. I recalled how so many things shifted during this time and how what felt like destruction in so many ways had actually been a grand construction process.
Still in Progress
But I’m still surprised at the ongoing construction taking place in our lives because of the flood. Just this past week, my husband and I discussed how God had shifted some of our perspectives right before the flood. And during our home’s reconstruction, without access to many of our belongings, we were forced to shift our focus more. Generally speaking, if we hadn’t been cut off from our life before the flood, we simply wouldn’t have fully changed voluntarily.
On that day of the flood, God moved because He knew we wouldn’t. On that day, we were a family overwhelmed by the extensive damage to our home. But today, just a year later, we’re a family overwhelmed by the unbelievable amount of shifting, rebuilding, breaking, and bonding that was necessary in the first place.
On the day of the crucifixion at Calvary, I imagine many onlookers also experienced a dramatic shift in perspective as the skies were darkened and the curtain in the Temple was torn. Lord, let us be a people who understand and appreciate the incredible shifting, rebuilding, breaking, and bonding necessary for us to be reconciled to the Lord.
What God breaks, He rebuilds with something better. And what He removes, He restores with something better. What God sets forth tomorrow is an answer to today’s need. Thank you, Lord, once more, for the flood, the fire, and those yet to come.
Joanna Sanders is a graduate of Villanova University and Moody Theological Seminary. She’s the author of Fire Women: Sexual Purity & Submission for the Passionate Woman and the co-author and editor of DiscipleTrip by Dr. Joey Cook. She’s also the founder and head writer of Colossians46.com, which provides biblical content support, writing, and editing. Most importantly, she is wife to Geoff and mom to three godly men-in-training. Her blog name “The Landing” comes from the account of the Ark resting on the mountain, creating a settled place — a landing — for man to start over, which echoes her new life in Christ.