It’s no secret that wildfires have spanned across parts of Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Though these fires aren’t exactly “storms” they certainly had the same disastrous affect. They left scorched pastures, dead livestock, and destroyed homes in their wake. While many were spared, others were not as lucky. As my heart hurt for these families – some complete strangers to me, others friends and family – I was reminded of a similar incident just last year. Massive flames engulfed Kansas and Oklahoma and created large amounts of suffering. I had known even more of these families affected. In both instances, all that I wanted to do was help but I was not for sure how to do so. After further evaluating the situations, I have been able to find outlets to help provide aid. Every time I heard from these families, I found the same hope they all chose to focus on. Instead of dwelling on their circumstances, they chose to find what they could do to bounce back and respond to a negative event in a positive way.
As I reflected and processed all of this, I began to wonder: would I have responded the same way?
We each have our own storms in various forms. For some of us, our storm revolves around a relationship while others have a storm that swirls when we are at school. Several other examples of storms can occur throughout everyday life. It can become so frustrating, but we have to remember the choice we have. Though we cannot always prevent these storms from happening, we can choose how we respond to them. We can feel bad for those who have been hurt, or we can choose to turn that compassion into action and find ways to help. Especially as we endure these different storms in our own lives, we can either feel sorry for ourselves or accept what has happened and learn how to bounce back from it. While in the midst of the storm, it can be incredibly difficult to make this decision. I have found it helpful to find an anchor to help me through the worst parts. This can be something to focus on, keep you grounded, or motivate you during these times. For me, this would be my faith and family.
A great song by Christian artist Ryan Stevenson called “Eye of the Storm” has a part in the chorus that says, “You alone are the anchor when my sails are torn, your love surrounds me in the eye of the storm”. What is your anchor? When times get tough and the storms shake you more than ever before, how are you going to respond?
Maybe you are sailing through clear waters right now or maybe your boat has been rocking for quite some time. Find comfort in remembering no storm lasts forever and they can even be followed by a rainbow.
Kansas FFA State President