One look at the cloud and I knew it was a thunderhead. A thunderhead is a cumulonimbus cloud seen during a thunderstorm. The shape and size of the cloud reminded me of an atomic bomb. That cloud summarized my previous day. It started with the DMV. (Need I say more?) We’ve all been there—the hoop-jumping, the paperwork, and the waiting. Add to that the mask, the heat, the cattle-line processing, and there you have it—a thunderhead!
Through God’s extended grace, I glimpsed the thunderhead over the mountains in the distance. I berated myself for blowing like an atomic bomb the day before, yet I was still fuming. I showed court documents proving who I was, but the long-awaited “Real ID” was denied. Never mind the fact that the agency who repeatedly handed me a license for the last forty-five years with the very name on the court document, still would not trust the evidence before them. Why? I had the wrong court document.
Being a woman fond of justice, I wanted to ask them if they trusted their own system. I prepared to argue the case. They were admitting their own office had given me a license for forty-five years that they apparently did not trust. (Cue the music for the boxing ring.) However, something came over me when I saw the line of at least thirty people standing behind me in the heat. Most of them wore masks, and even at 9:00 a.m. perspiration beaded on foreheads, and glasses fogged over from hot breath. I knew I would not win this fight. The information given by the DMV employee at a previous appointment was incorrect. The wasted appointment, my negative response, and the lack of understanding and acceptance for what to me was an obvious truth, brewed beneath this storm cloud.
God reminded me that considering what is happening in the world today, my frustrating experience was nothing. It was just a thunderhead hanging out there over a mountain much bigger than my challenging day. It reminded me of the children’s book, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. We all have them. In fact, we probably have more of them these days so it’s important to extend grace to ourselves.
As I bring my daily life before God in prayer, I know it is the pandemic and world strife, which formed my atomic cloud. God’s extended grace through that thunderhead reminded me that beneath it all, God still cares. Beneath it all, God whispers like Alexander with encouragement and grace—some days are just like that.
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23 (NIV)