"Monday 5 Things" with D. Paul Graham

Monday 5 Things…..Storms…..

A week of intense — at times torrential — rains and flash floods, the official start of hurricane season with remembrance of lives radically changed by the likes of Irma, Sandy, Floyd and Harvey and once again being awe struck as I watched an incredible lighting show from an approaching storm, all inspired this morning’s musings. Today’s M5T considers the physical and metaphorical power of storms in our lives.

1.  Storms have Intensity

The power of storms speaks to us. Storms disrupt, causing us to slow down, focusing our attention on what is in front of us and staying safe. Storms can test and challenge. They can illuminate our sorrow, inspire humility through their power, and resonate through our very core like a cannonade clap of thunder of a mid-summer’s tempest.

2.  Storms can be Beautiful

Despite how destructive these downpours can be, they also have an innate beauty. The contrast of a dark sky against muted colors of the greens and yellows of a low country marsh.  Waves crashing and spraying against a shore line. Mud puddles just waiting to be jumped in. Our minds’ eye thinking of Gene Kelly dancing and singing in the rain. Being energized looking upwards as the warmth of Georgian rain hits your face. The smell of fresh rich earth and green grass once the rains have stopped.

3.  Storms Pass

At times storms seem to come out of nowhere catching us flat footed, frightening us, taking parts of us with it that we did not expect. Other times we see the whirlwinds approaching and have time to prepare or to plan to seek shelter. In either case, we know the storm will eventually pass through.

4.  Storms are Mysterious

As the boatswain in Shakespeare’s “Tempest” observed, not even kings can command the elements. Storms remind us of how little we can actually control in nature. Only our Creator has that control. Storms allow us to be in awe of God. It is perhaps one of life’s greatest mysteries that He sometimes calms the squalls in our lives and other times He lets them rage… both with the purpose of catching our attention and to teach us something that we need at that point in our lives. In either case, calming comfort or raging that seemingly is without respite, He promises that the storm will never destroy us.

5.  Storms bring Change

Storms can uproot lives in a matter or moments. They can bring a change of perspective, moving us to places we never thought we would be or even to places we didn’t want to go. Sailors adjust their sails and point the bow head-on into a relentless wind. Pilots change altitude to find clear skies by climbing above the turbulence of dark and ominous clouds. Storms can bring out the worst and the best in people. Storms point out our weaknesses, our hubris, our misjudgment and can even make us feel insane. And yet, storms are necessary to nourish, replenish, and bring growth into our lives. They can move us with new found compassion to help others as we realize the needs and hurts of others far exceed our own.

Here’s to a week of facing your physical and metaphorical life storms head-on.

© 2018 D. Paul Graham, all rights reserved. 

D. Paul Graham is passionate about people, culture, photography and business.  He has embraced his wanderlust with his travels around the globe and is at peace with his need for spirited drives in all things automotive.  

You can find M5T each Monday here on www.southmag.com  and by friending D. Paul Graham on Facebook.  Paul is also a contributing photographer to South Magazine.  His photographic work can be found on Instagram @dpgraham and at www.imageGRAHAM.com . Your feedback is always welcome.  Email Paul at dpg@imagegraham.com