Friday, July 20, 2012

LIFE LESSONS: Power Outage

LIFE LESSON: Power Outage
by Cindy Stiverson

My hubby and I watched from our sliding glass doors as the wind reached 70mph. It blew in a circular motion. I called it a rain blizzard. We couldn't see past our own back yard. Our closest neighbors' homes were blurred by the storm. Within minutes the lights began to blink. We groaned. Our groans were greeted with exactly what we were groaning about. The power went out. That was only the beginning of our groaning! That storm left us powerless for six days.

The outage extended over fifty miles. Stores and businesses were closed. Very few gas stations or grocery stores were open. Most only accepted cash. Long lines formed to fill gas tanks and gas cans to fuel home generators. It was a strange feeling to shop for groceries in the dark, to see empty produce displays, to hear the announcement that it was not safe to purchase remaining dairy, fruits, or vegetables. Our world suddenly became very small, even a bit frightening.

Imagining a world without power is very hard to fathom. Discovering our dependency on electricity was a rude awakening. It's frightening to think how our lives would change, how people would respond if we faced a wide scale black-out. What would we do? How would we live? Our minds cannot even go would be so different.

During those six days of discomfort, life felt out of control. Emotions were triggered, confidence was shaken.  We were no longer self-sufficient. We had to rely on each other to get things done. We couldn't do what we wanted to do or what we would normally be doing. We discovered we were really never in control to begin with. Even the hum of the generators became an annoying reminder that life as we know it had been suspended. Faith in our self-made world was shaken to the core.

The power outage reminded me of the many ways life leaves us uncomfortable. It stirred up memories of times I have felt powerless. Abuse. Controlling or broken relationships. Sickness, disease, chronic pain. Joblessness. Loss of a loved one. Financially, emotionally, physically drained. These hardships drew me closer to my Power Source.

When it feels like life is spinning out of control, I am so thankful that God is sovereign. He is in control. He brings my life back into perspective and gives me peace to face each day. But I must seek Him first. I must go to my prayer closet, journal, pray, read His word, listen to His voice, and do what He asks. Then my heart, mind, soul, and spirit are aligned with His will and I am at peace, ready for whatever that day may bring.

When everything around us changes, we are not left powerless. God is still in charge and His plans are "not to harm us, but to give us hope and a future. You will find Him "when you seek Him with all your heart (Jer. 29:11-13)."

"...we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ...And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverence; perseverence, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly (Romans 5:1-6NIV)."

"He was crucified in weakness, yet he lives by God's power. Likewise, we are weak in him yet by God's power, we will live with him to serve you (2 Cor. 13:4NIV)." 

"I raised you up for this very purpose,
that I might display my power in you
and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth (Romans 9:17NIV)"

Cynthia K (Cindy) Stiverson
I am a speaker, writer, artist and an ordained minister in the Church of the Nazarene. I lead the women at NewarkNaz in Newark, Ohio. In 1998, God gave me a vision for Woven: Women of Virtue Network. It's a blessing to be involved in so many women's lives. Sometimes I think my heart will burst.

So very thankful for my hubby Mark. Extremely proud of my daughter speaker/author Nicole and son-in-law Matthew Bromley. Love my grandsons Jude and Isaac beyond measure.

Loving God with all my heart, soul, strength; and loving and leading others to do the same is the greatest joy of my life.


  1. Love this, Cindy. This is exactly how I think during such times, that we are not in control, but thankfully God is! We have no need to fear. Thank you for your words this morning. I needed this reminder!

    1. Thanks for your comment Christine! I need this reminder too. Life is feeling out of sync for me lately. Thankfully, I know who to turn to. :)


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