Sweet sweet relief.

The calm after the storm.

I’m sitting on the front porch of my house in my rocking chair and writing this article. A week ago I was flustered and stressed and moving 100 miles an hour.

It rained about an hour ago, and I sat and watched the rain while I organized some books in my room. Now that the sun is out, I’m sitting here outside, listening to the birds chirping and watching the wind ruffling the leaves on the bushes in front of me.

It is quiet and still.

Funny how a week ago I felt like my life was spinning and I would never get through all the work I had to do. Now I am sitting and relishing the silence.

It’s always in the midst of the storm that we forget how sweet the calm is afterward. The smell outside after a summer rain. The way the flowers look when the petals are still covered with water droplets. The sky looks bluer somehow than it did before, and the grass looks healthier and refreshed.

I don’t think I ever actually stop during the craziness of life just to assure myself that it’s only temporary. There are always hills on the other side of valleys and birds chirping when the storms end. And to be honest, I probably wouldn’t notice the extreme stillness in the air when the birds are singing or care about the wind ruffling the bushes if I hadn’t just been in the midst of the crazy stormy valley.

What I mean is, life is pretty amazing. All aspects of it. Even though I wouldn’t admit it in the midst of the harder seasons, those parts of life are pretty amazing too. That doesn’t mean they aren’t hard or stressful, but it does mean that they usually lead to an outcome that is better than where we started.

I read a quote recently that said something along the lines of, “there’s no good days and bad days, only days of grace!” How true is that? Every good thing is a gift of grace from God. Every hard thing points us to the grace of God to get through it, and nothing in the world could ever separate us from God’s grace or cause us to get more or less of it.

What I’m learning is that God’s grace in my life is just as evident in the storms as it is in the calm that follows. Because no matter what happens around me, the truth of Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross remains the same, and His grace is always abounding.

So, I am thankful for this day of peaceful grace, and I am thankful for the crazy days of grace that are to come because every day is full of beauty when we choose to look through a heavenly lense in exchange for our fogy earthly ones.