Hail, hail, everywhere . . .
Long beams of Easter light from the west brushed across our icy yard, as if with a magic wand.
I was setting the table for our daughter’s birthday party. Mid-cutlery, thunder rolled, making me glance up. Ice pelted the roof, yet the sun blazed.
Pure glint dosey-do-ed with gravity
as compacted snow
pummeled our cars, the deck, and lawn.
Who could ignore this dangerous, glittering, magical racket?
Hurrying outside, camera in hand, I wanted to capture the fleeting, crystallized scene:
trees lit with daylight constellations . . .
shrubs decked in white sapphires . . .
a sequinned gown for the limpid air.
Hail hits hard, like bad news
It can hammer a heart, gouge inner peace. Along comes a death, or dire diagnosis. A career setback. A family feud or a friend’s downward spiral.
Amid too many grim tidings lately I call to mind God’s storehouses of snow, mentioned in Job,
the plague of hail in ancient Egypt,
those predicted hailstones in Revelation. In each case, God’s mastery over weather is on display, though I struggle to feel positive about the human price paid.
What am I missing here?
Hail, tell us your secrets
Though perilous, hail showers are also spellbinding, glorious, a glistening force that transfigures landscapes. And, perhaps, lives. It’s working on mine today . . .
Hail, noun: precipitation in the form of small balls or lumps usually consisting of concentric layers of clear ice and compact snow.
Hail, verb (archaic): used to express acclaim. “Hail favored one! Hail Caesar! Hail, King of the Jews! Hail, Mary! Hail to the Chief!”
Hale, homonym, adjective: to be free from defect, disease, or infirmity : sound; also: retaining exceptional health and vigor (Merriam-Webster).
Hail, teach us your ways
Lord knows, I need instruction. Feeling neither vigorous nor exultant at the moment, I’m writing this post having woken up crying, twice, during the night. Having teared up again, several times today.
Am I depressed? Maybe. Too early to tell. I gaze at this photo of the weathered chair beneath our crab apple tree, festooned with icy finery. Marvel lightens my sorrow—a few degrees.
No matter how I feel, the God of fire and hail offers respites along the way. A pause. A dose of wonder despite my inability to catalogue or corral my emotions.
Soon now, I will venture outside with my camera and hunt more evidence of God’s shining presence within all that remains unsolved in my soul. My pleas for the healing of loved ones. The final home-going of family. The recent relational storm that laid bare my need for forgiveness.
Fire, and hail; snow, and vapors; stormy wind fulfilling his word. – Psalm 148:8
I am counting on this: that everything eventually fits into God’s larger story, even volatile weather of the heart. Be it exultant or quiet acclamation, this I aspire to—no matter the weather, or season, event, or prognosis. The news. My mood. Or even our nation’s final candidates.
Grace comes. The light changes. Blues, you lose this round.
It’s neither hail nor storm… It’s just a stir that precedes the settlement of your destiny. Believe that you will not remain on the ground. Wake up and try again! ―Israelmore Ayivor,