Beauty in the Clouds

by Aug 19, 2016Easy and Light

Beauty in the Clouds

For your steadfast love is great above the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.

Psalm 108:4 (ESV)

My husband and I were in Colorado this week, combining his work trip with a much-needed getaway. A highlight for me was visiting Garden of the Gods, a beautiful park filled with stunning rock formations. As we strolled through the visitor center, a large video display caught my eye. It featured time-lapse camera shots of the sky above the park – an entire month’s worth of footage sped up to less than 30 minutes. As I watched the spectacular cloud formations rolling in the sky over the rocks, I noticed something interesting. On days with lots of clouds, the footage slowed down, giving the viewer the maximum opportunity to appreciate God’s handiwork. But on sunny days, the footage skipped quickly ahead, barely allowing a glimpse of the empty blue skies. Clearly, there was more beauty to be seen in the clouds.
Thank you, God, for the beauty of your works in the midst of my stormy days. Help me to cling to you so that my life displays your spectacular goodness for all to see.

I realized that our spiritual life is much like this – it’s during the stormy times that we experience the most growth and when our relationship with God is most deep. We can see this in our favorite Bible characters: we don’t hear much about David during the years his kingdom was peaceful, but read in depth about his struggles with King Saul, Bathsheba and his rebellious sons. We know almost nothing about the years when Naomi was in Moab – instead, the story picks up when she’s tragically lost all the men in her life. The list goes on, but the pattern is clear – our God-story is more remarkable during the stormy times.

If we choose to cling to God when the clouds roll in, our relationship with him becomes rich. We grow in faith, in wisdom, and in our knowledge of the creator of the universe. It’s not that God is absent during the sunny times – it’s just that his beautiful handiwork doesn’t show up quite as clearly. Our struggles can become a glorious backdrop for his majesty and power.

Do I fully appreciate the beauty of the clouds in my life? Do I marvel at the richness of God’s goodness when the storms roll in? Or am I too focused on wishing for the sun to come out again?

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