I turned left out of the driveway and headed toward downtown. The road is long and straight and lined with tall pine trees. The first thing I noticed was that not far down the road dust was blowing so thick you couldn't see the car in front of you. The second thing I noticed was that the song I was jamming to on the radio was interrupted by the national weather service advising everyone to get inside and take cover because of severe lightning storms and wind. The third thing I noticed was a large chunk of a pine tree branch landing on my windshield. OK, so the radio guy wasn't kidding.
I was supposed to meet my husband and some friends in town for dinner. I picked up my cell and called to see if he was on the way and if the storm was raging at our house like it was where I was in town. He answered his phone, but it was a short conversation, “…trying to get there…trees in the road…sawing out…”
That was it and then the cell phones went dead. As I drove through town toward the restaurant, I tried to choose the streets with the fewest trees. Branches, limbs and debris were everywhere and traffic was like something you’d see in a sci-fi movie where everyone is panicking to get out of town before the aliens get them. I could hear sirens going in different directions. I suddenly felt very prayerful.
The wind was incredible. I don’t know how fast it was blowing, but it was snapping trees like they were made of straw. I had never seen anything like this before. The only word I could think of was powerful. Really powerful. While I watched the trees coming down around me, I suddenly felt very small.
In I Kings 19:11, the Bible says that a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord. Judging by what I was seeing, that must have been some wind. The current wind was turning Ponderosa Pines into toothpicks. I can’t even image a wind that could tear mountains apart and shatter rocks. It made me think of God’s awesome power and what it would really be like if He chose to unleash that power. I suddenly felt very thankful.
I made it to the restaurant parking lot, opted for a space as far away from trees as I could get, ran for the front doors, and waited. Shortly after, my husband, son, and our friends arrived. We sat together and each recounted the tales of our respective trips to the restaurant. I suddenly felt very hungry!