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But when I Am weak Is when He Is strong

Outside my study window, the wind is doing The Dance of The Tree Branches. Verse One goes Up and Down, Around and Side to Side, while the second verse starts: “Let’s see how many branches we can break off.”

Hanging on

At the end of one slender branch, a cluster of salmon-pink flowers hang on for dear life. I have been watching it, and it’s now going into the third day. But hang on, it does. The Spanish moss goes flying, gets stuck, whipped around, and then skedaddles down the canal, But the pink flowers? Nah. They’re good.

Nicole came roaring up from the Bahamas as a subtropical storm, and we Floridians, having seen the worst of the worst as far as hurricanes go, shrugged our collective shoulders and said –

It’s just a subtropical storm

Still, the survival instinct kicked in. My husband went shopping on Tuesday and returned to announce no small water bottles left.

Huh? No problem for me. I have a dispenser in the refrigerator, but I like leaving small bottles of cold water for my garbage, recycling, and garden refuse collectors. The job they do in the heat we have most of the time; God bless them if I can make their life a little easier.

They wave as they leave,

roaring down the road, hanging on for dear life

On Tuesday afternoon, Nicole got severe PMS, threw a couple of temper tantrums, and went from a subtropical storm to the real thing, a tropical storm.

Nicole transitioned from a subtropical storm to a tropical storm Tuesday, a day after forming in the Atlantic Ocean, according to the National Hurricane Center Source

As of Tuesday afternoon, the center of Tropical Storm Nicole was about 285 miles northeast of the northwestern Bahamas and about 395 miles east of West Palm Beach, Florida, according to the National Hurricane Center. Source

Pelting rain and just like that, while we were still hanging on for dear life to the “tropical storm” passing through, Nicole was upgraded to Hurricane Nicole, Category One.

The lady made landfall early Thursday along the east coast of Florida just south of Vero Beach. Source

And now it was serious. Maybe those who bought all the water had advanced knowledge or were preparing for a worst-case scenario. This is Florida, after all.

My Pilates class was canceled, and the studio shut down. My mammogram was canceled, and the radiology office closed. Trash pickup was postponed.

Then the Lady changed her mind — again
Hanging on to her Hurricane One title did not help, and Hurricane Nicole was downgraded back to a tropical storm. She made up for the insult by racing across the central part of the state.

It is now Thursday. The rain has stopped, for now. The wind is about 36mph with gusts of up to 50 mph. I have never seen the water in the canal this high.

It has been an exciting couple of days with our three rescue dogs that refuse to go potty in this weather and will hang on for dear life. They don’t mess in the house; the five-pounder had one incident; they won’t go.

You can beg, go out with them, and look for a sheltered spot. Nothing. They hold on for better weather. I broke down and put down peepee pads in strategic places.


I gave up and fed them breakfast. And the Good Lord closed the faucets up high, and we had a break in the rain.

Everyone scrambled madly for the back door. Mikhail, the Lhasa, and patriarch of the family, gets out and does everything as fast as possible. Jasper, my hubby’s poodle mix, sighed with relief when he did his thing.

And Peanut? I tried to act as a windshield while he braved the gusts and pooped. Hanging on any longer wasn’t an option; there’s only so much volume a tiny body can hold after a full breakfast.

The house is a mess. Every time a dog, or one of us, goes out, we track grass, dirt, bits of this, and bits of that. The lawn was mowed just before all this happiness started. I’m a bit of a neat freak and am hanging on for dear life to my good mood, telling myself how blessed we are as it could be so much worse.

And outside my study window, the last pink summer flowers hang on for dear life at the end of that branch. Below the canal flows fast and restlessly. All debris accumulates as the wind takes revenge and flings whatever it can into the water.

Funny that bigger, sturdier branches have broken off and floated away. Dry palm fronds broke off and galloped across manicured lawns, ending up in the water.

But this small, slender branch can handle nature’s violence, the rain, and the wind.

I want to think I’m like those pink flowers. Always holding on for dear life. When I look back on my life, I can see the times when life’s storms were violent.

But I was okay. In fact, I was wonderful. Why? I am weak, but His power is made perfect in my weakness. All I need do is hang on for dear life.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Cor 12:9–11 NIV)