Have you ever had a scary or even traumatic experience? This past week my family did. Me, my husband and our two boys live in the town of Troutdale Oregon where we were hit with the scariest winter ice storm we have ever seen. We were warned that a blizzard was headed our way days before, but we really had no idea what was about to hit us. First it was snow, then it was freezing rain, and then it was more freezing rain with 60-to-90-mile winds. On Thursday January 18th, I was watching the news report on our current winter storm. Many people had lost power, but we had been fortunate enough not to lose ours, yet. There was a story Thursday afternoon about a family who had died from electric shock due to a broken power line. I watched with concern and sympathy as the news reporter said that a toddler survived but had lost both parents. Just a few hours later, my family and I were sitting around the table eating dinner when our house went dark. I went upstairs to light a few candles when I heard my children yell “mom!” from downstairs. I ran to the living room and found my husband and children standing by the window watching in horror as a power line pole broke in half and fell across our street barely missing our gate. Remembering the news reported earlier that day involving a broken powerline, I declared that no one is to go outside. We all just starred from the window at the broken power line pole, not knowing what to do or what would happen next.

The next day I checked my phone for updates and was alerted that our street was closed. Then I saw the picture posted by the city of Troutdale. Almost every single power line pole on our street fell down. We were trapped with no power, no heat and very little light.

Over the next few days, we huddled by our fireplace with flashlights and candles, playing games and reading books. It was cold, dark, and somewhat miserable. But we had each other and the opportunity for a lot of quality time with our kids. We set up a bed by the fireplace where the four of us slept for the next two nights. It was kind of like camping, and our children loved it. Me and my husband on the other hand were getting anxious.

We watched the PGE workers as they came and worked on the broken power lines. They worked hard in cold, windy conditions, getting multiple new power line poles up despite the danger. The roads were covered with thick ice and yet they found a way to get here and work on the power lines. It took them three days to fix it. When they were done, our power was restored and we all cheered, waving at the PGE workers through our window and crying tears of joy! God kept us safe despite the danger of multiple broken power lines on our street. God kept us safe despite the strong winds and the multiple trees falling down in our city. God kept us safe despite the thick ice and the many car accidents in our city. Even in the midst of the storm – God was with us!

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

Psalms 46:1

As we were watching the General Electric employees work to restore our power, I was reminded of this scripture verse in Matthew 5.

You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on it’s stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your father in heaven.

Matthew 5:14-16

Jesus is the electricity. All power and glory and honor belong to him. But as Christ followers, we can be like General Electric employees for Jesus. We have the opportunity and the responsibility to hook up the wires so that the light of Jesus can get into the homes and hearts of others. It might be scary and dangerous at times, but so worth it! Just like those PGE workers who restored our electricity. They weren’t able to do the job in one day, it took them multiple days and it was a difficult job. It was a process. In the same way, discipleship is a process. The General Electric workers were not themselves the electricity but had tools to bring the electricity to our home. In the same way, we ourselves are not the power of God, but we have the tools to bring the power of God to the hearts of those around us. Specifically, through the word of God. We ourselves are not the savior or redeemer, but it is our job to introduce people to the one who is our savior and redeemer – Jesus Christ!

Jesus is our source of power, he is our strength, he is our electricity, and he is our light!

As a mom, the first people I need to be sharing the power and light of Jesus with are my own children. We live in a scary world and as a parent I desire to protect my kids. However, I cannot protect my children from the storms of this world. My children will face trials and hardships and there is nothing I can do to stop that. But I can hook them up to their true source of power by telling them about Jesus. I can help them find strength by telling them about our mighty God.

Currently I am raising two boys which is a difficult task when you are a woman because I myself have never been a boy or a man, so how in the world am I to help my boys become men? I am reminded that King David wasn’t a strong powerful man because he defeated a giant or because he was victorious in battle. He was a strong man because he was a man who ran after the heart of God. A man after God’s own heart. It is my number one job as a mom to reveal the heart of God to my boys, trusting that God will be the one to make them strong. This is a process. There are days when I feel the wind and the rain pushing against me as I work hard to parent my children. But if God willing, I see the light of Jesus in my children ten, twenty, thirty years from now, it will all be worth it! That is my prayer and my hope as a mother – to see the power of Jesus shining in my children. And then one day, Jesus will send them too. What an amazing gift it would be to see my boys working as spiritual electricians for Jesus as they fearlessly connect wires so that others can experience the power of Christ in their lives.

Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

Matthew 28:19-20

One Comment

  1. What an intense situation and what an article that you shared. So thankful for the outcome and that you are safe now. I love the idea of your boys someday being spiritual electricians for Jesus. What a great analogy. He is our refuge, He is the light and it’s our job to share that. Thank you, Bethany

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