Last week I got lost. Not really, really lost, I just took a wrong turn and discovered this beautiful spot! I had go the “wrong” way back so I could stop to grab a few pictures.
Here’s a view of this very spot on a map. If you look closely, you can see the green patch. That’s where I was standing, on a pier sticking out into the river.
Do you see how the river shore is almost a straight line for a ways, except for that lone green patch sticking out like a bow? The name of this spot is “Tempest Knob.” My curiosity got the best of me, so I Googled “Tempest Knob.” Wouldn’t you know, I could buy knobs for my Tempest, if I had one! Look it up if you’re wondering what that is. Not quite what I was searching for.
Tempest Knob was the name of a nearby train stop back in the early 1900’s. High society folks would get dropped off near their homes after visiting the city. And that’s about all the history I could discover.
So the rest of my supposing about this name is pure conjecture!
A knob, geologically speaking, is “a boulder or group of boulders or an area of resistant rocks protruding from the side of a hill or mountain” (National Soil Survey Handbook).
There is no hill or mountain here, but you can see from the map that this spot has resisted river erosion for many years. It’s quite near the ocean and has sand along the riverbank, but the underlying boulder formation isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
A tempest is a windy, violent storm. Being so near the ocean, we have windy storms quite often. Visitors who happen to be here during a “normal” windy day get worried, wondering if the trees are going to fall on the house. While it’s nothing compared to the winds out west, it’s one of the windiest areas on average on the east coast. Winds up to 60 mph (26.8m/s) aren’t uncommon, and there’s no use even carrying an umbrella in the rain on a slightly windy day!
Even right now, we have rain with 18 mph (8 m/s) winds. I’m loving the sound in the trees! It’s one of my favorite things to hear.
So to have a place named “Tempest Knob”, there must have been quite a storm there at one time. Hurricanes coming in off the ocean can pack quite a punch, to be sure, so perhaps that’s where its name came from? None of my research came up with anything behind the name, but it only makes sense.
No matter what storm comes whipping over the water, it’s not going to affect the knob sticking out into the river.
The day I happened upon the scene, everything was still and serene. Of course it was — the surface was frozen!
If you look closely, you can see the circles of thawed ice around the bottom of the pilings, as well as the edge of the ice farther out in the river where the current moves more swiftly.
It may have been peaceful that day, but I know one thing . . . one day a storm’s going to blow in again! And when it does, I just can’t see myself driving over to Tempest Knob to take a picture from the pier for you to see the conditions. You’ll just have to imagine a storm blowing in from the ocean and over the river!
How is your life today, my friend? Are things peaceful and serene like the scene over the river a few days ago? Or are they more like whipping hurricane-force winds throwing things all over the place?
No matter what’s going on outside, you can be at peace on the inside. We have a promise to hold onto:
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33 NIV).
“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid” (John 14:27 NLT).
When we get our eyes on the storms outside, we can easily become troubled and afraid! But Jesus wants more for us. He wants to fill us with his peace.
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7 NLT).
Grab hold of this promise, my friend! Inner peace brings strength to handle whatever storms may come your way. This peace is yours for the asking — you, too, can be an immovable boulder for God!
So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable…
1 Corinthians 15:58