heatwave: on being scorched and getting soaked

An unprecedented heatwave (probably due to climate change and attributed to winds blowing hot air up from north Africa and the Sahara) has been making its scorching, record breaking 40+ degrees centigrade 🔥🥵 way across the UK.

It’s been hard without the benefit of air conditioning. The high temperatures have had devastating effects countrywide, exacerbated health problems, taken lives, and initiated fires on our tinder-dry, rain-deprived land and properties.

We’re so unused to temperatures like this, and ill prepared. So as I wilt and melt faster than an iced lollipop, while we sit closer to our two rather feeble fans, I remember another sultry summer and how it led to a spectacular thunderstorm.

It was just before I became badly afflicted by M.E and chronic illness, and when our boys were small and could amuse themselves for hours making sandcastles. I hope the poem below provides some light relief for you, too… ⛱🐚🩱🌊☀️

Exodus

Darkened clouds rolled in 
from the coast, hanging heavy 
as a canopy over the beach, 

encroaching on the sun's rays, 
obliterating heat.
Thick drops began to fall, 

as we scrambled to gather
our belongings, while people 
shrieked playfully,

and others emerged 
swiftly from the sea.

Towels became raincoats 
and hats. Exiting became
our best option, though 

we were way too far 
from the safe cocoon 
of our parked car.

Clutching children and buckets 
and spades and all,
the paraphernalia of a day 

at the beach, we giggled
and ran, like drowned rats,
drenched beyond belief.

Shivering and sheltering 
under trees, saturated
but strangely happy, 

we watched rainfall morph 
into a barrage of hail, 
while lightning prevailed.

We were struck. Not by 
lightning, thankfully, but
by the way forces of nature 

were pitted against
one another in a battle 
of the elements.

Sheets of rain cascaded, 
followed by sharp stones
of hail, while thunder raged 

and electrical forks
zig-zagged and streaked 
across it all.

The heat of the day 
dissipated under this 
onslaught. And then there was 

a lull. We ran for our car, 
like prisoners released on bail.
And as we sat inside, 

trying to get dry, we knew
we would never forget 
the spectacular sight

of a summer storm 
turning day to night.
© joylenton

This summer is proving to be far too hot for serious thought which is why I’m sharing these memoir style posts about my childhood or later on. Normal service will be resumed in due course! Meanwhile, do let me know if you are enjoying this kind of post. x 😎❤️

storm: what to do while looking for a break in the clouds

 

I’m a curled comma, crouched under the duvet, waiting for the storm to pass. Hoping it will be short-lived—relentless, sharp and heavy as it is. This is no ordinary storm, though it’s physical enough.

It’s a dark cloud covering raining down weariness, weakness, profound fatigue, swirling brain fog and constant pain. Bolts of lightning shoot through muscle and bone like fiery darts, making me horribly aware of my fragile frame and frail humanity, and how it hurts so easily.

Maybe you’ve got some storm clouds hovering over you? They could be physical, financial, emotional or relational. Perhaps you, too, are waiting for the weather of your circumstances to improve and longing for those dark clouds to give way to sunshine again.

It is said that every cloud has a silver lining, and that we can learn to dance in the rain. Optimism is a wonderful thing, but there are days and seasons when we lack the wherewithal to stay positive. What then?

We can take comfort from having a God who walks on water, as Master and Lord of any storm we may encounter. He invites us to come, look up and keep our eyes on Him, listen to His voice above the surging din, ignore waves rising and our fear of drowning, and confidently reach out for His hand instead.

Healing air of Home

When dark nights haunt a good morning

let’s dance slow to life’s hot fire and

picture a young, green universe, like velvet

breath-kiss, embracing peace with angel breeze

See how healing air of Home bleeds open

like sacred ocean smile—and here we fly

©joylenton2017

 

Sometimes the storms are literal. Many a dramatic summer drenching from years ago springs to mind, where we had to urgently gather our belongings and hurry off  the beach, as thunder and lightning crashed above our heads and some brave souls stayed in the sea! Though thirsty land and plants welcome each refreshing drop from heaven.

Lively water music

Summer beauty is so black-dress gorgeous

as purple petal rain storm rips through

garden’s elaborate gown like mad language

and lies languid as drooling death—beating

time with lively water music—as sun’s hot

tongue still sits and sings over our skin

©joylenton2017

 

Life’s sudden squalls and storms begin to dissipate as we yield to God’s free-flowing river of grace, His vast ocean of love and continual rivulets of peace. In the surrender of resting prayer we are given means to cope and rise above it all.

And in the remembrance of God’s goodness toward us, we have resources for  the stormy days ahead, while we look for a break in the clouds today.