Love Drives out the Hamsters: How to find Peace when faced with a Storm.

Superstorm Sandy swirls around our home and I ponder the fear and anxiety that so many people must be feeling right now. The year is 2012 and Hurricane Sandy is predicted to be the largest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic and as I type she blows through the densely populated east coast threatening nearly 60 million people. I say prayers for our home and for all those who may be in Storm Sandy’s path and then I keep typing. We have hunkered down our home and now we much wait. When one is grieving or afraid or worried the advice I remember author and missionary Elizabeth Elliott giving is to:

“Just do the next thing.”

Elizabeth Elliott

So I keep typing.

Some people deal with severe anxiety all the time. Like my friend Lucy. She shared with me over Mexican food,

“Sometimes I feel there are hamsters running around in my brain” and then she leaned in and whispered , “and lately the hamsters are having a party”.

I smile because even though Lucy deals with ADHD and other learning challenges she has kept her sense of humor. She also has a childlike wisdom. “Ms. Amber, could you write down something I can look at when I am worried?”

So after finishing lunch, I bring Lucy back to my office where I grab a big black marker and a piece of white clean paper and Alice intently watches as I write out the Word of God. She tries to tell me what to write and what she wants to hear but I insist that I cannot make this up but to truly bring peace the words need to be from the book that points always to the “Prince of Peace”. So I write out:

#1– Cast your cares on God, for He cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7)

Just as Peter cast the net out as a fisherman, we need to throw out to God our cares and concerns. Write them down or symbolically open your hands and ask Him to take control and take over your concerns.

#2- There is No FEAR in LOVE, but perfect LOVE casts out Fear. ( 1 Jn. 4:18)

What can help push out our fears and anxieties? Love.

Who is Love? The. Prince. Of. Peace. Jesus.

Lucy, I urge, “If you invite the Prince of Peace into your troubled heart, there will be no room for all your hamsters”.

What about your hamsters? What is running around in your head? Are they having a hamster party? Each day we have new hamsters (anxieties) running around in our heads. So each day we need to sit in quiet and invite God’s perfect Love and truth to drive out those pesky little rodents. We need to write out our cares and cast them out to God. Then we should thank Him for all the storms He as already carried us through.

This is how I concluded my piece seven years ago, “Our electricity is out and as I type the laptop uses up its last juice. Night falls and I will listen in bed as my home creeks under the constant rain and the howling winds rips through the trees. Tomorrow we will pick up the debris and check to see if we have permanent damage from flooding.

I will rest in God’s Love for I have God’s peace in my heart.

Below is a poem dedicated to all my sisters who are facing storms….literal storms and emotional ones as well. Keep your eyes on the King of Heaven who is on His Throne.

No Storm is Greater Than I

by Amber O’Brien

You’re sitting in a rain cloud

Don’t know which way to go

You’re dreaming of your future

and Hoping for a rainbow

But the winds are ripping faster

Your life’s falling apart

Your can’t see through a rain-cloud

But God can see you heart


Child jump aboard my hands

Above the Storm we’ll Fly

Let Abba’s Love enfold you

Daddy’s hands will hold you

No Storm is Greater than I

I know you heart is heavy

I feel your every pain

while I catch each precious tear

On my throne I remain


Child jump aboard my hands

Above the storm we’ll fly

Let Abba’s Love enfold you

Daddy’s hands will hold you

No Storm is greater than I