Newer Views.

I lift up my eyes to the hills – where does my help come from? 

My help comes from the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2

On Monday afternoon October 23rd around 4:30 PM, an EF-2 tornado struck several counties in western North Carolina – including mine. After the ferocious funnel touched down, it traveled northeast along a narrow path, gained strength, and reached a top wind speed of 125 mph. The winds clipped my community, leaving the area to look like it’d suffered a seriously bad haircut.

When the tornado weakened to an EF-1, its path widened to 3/4 of a mile, creating straight-line winds that destroyed everything within reach before sucking in its last breath. 

The total path length came to 22.83 miles, nearly matching the distance of a marathon.

Trees of all strengths and heights were snapped in half, plucking at power lines like guitar strings on their way down. Forty-thousand power outages created an eerie darkness that crept throughout the city. 

We lost power for three days. Food in our refrigerator had to be tossed. The top half of a tree in our backyard toppled into a neighbor’s yard.

How humbling to experience the mighty breath of God. 

Praise the Lord, O my soul. All that is within me, praise His holy name. Psalm 103:1

Natural disasters being no exception.

A dear friend suffered much greater damage to her property than we did. Enough to make the evening news. Several trees in her front yard were destroyed. A few poked holes in her roof, resulting in the need for a new one.

Dare anyone offer a pitiful sympathy tongue cluck, she noted that, with those trees out of the way, she has newer views of the lake and mountains near her house and can grow more grass. The heaven-brushed portraits of Appalachian sunrise and sunset? They’re more clear.

The unexpected twister has given her opportunity to know several neighbors better. You suppose some needed reassurance of God’s goodness in the midst of trial? Or have no relationship with God? Most likely.

Post-tornado, the newer views have gifted her with relationships to nurture. 

God is a good Father Who’s in the business of offering newer views, providing shelter in the storm. Lifting my eyes to the hills, I’m able to see a greater depth of beauty and opportunity ahead. 

I lift up my eyes to the hills – where does my help come from? 

My help comes from the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2

There are times when the worries in my head weigh that of a bowling ball. Lifting up my gaze feels impossible. My view becomes limited to my two, size 9 1/2 feet, glued to the ground in fear. So not the inspiration for the next great oil painting. 

When, in His strength, I lift up my eyes to the hills it’s my responsibility to ask that He remove obstructive trees of worry and concern so I won’t miss the awesomeness of a newer view.

Are you struggling to lift up your eyes to the hills? If not, is anything blocking your ability to see the help He gives? 


  1. Martha Mullins says:

    Beautiful commentary of God’s goodness in the midst of what seems to be disaster! And so remarkable that our friend was able to see that instead of all the chaos and loss!

    • Mary Felkins says:

      Thank you! And I agree. It’s made me re-think where I allow my eyes to land when difficulty comes. Lift them UP.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.