Lessons from the Rain
I’ve been sitting in the camper while it rains, listening to the sound of the drops on the roof and watching it bounce off the little pond. I am once again reminded of the incredible way that God created nature to mirror life so that we could learn from every experience and see His hand in it all.
In Texas we spend a great deal of our year praying for rain. Our land gets dry and parched. Farmers without irrigation struggle to grow dry-land crops at the mercy of the weather. Sometimes, in the Spring, we have rain that fills our tanks, lakes, and creeks in preparation for the dry, hot season to come. Sometimes there are weeks with no rain and the danger of fires and crops that shrivel up from the heat is high. The grass gets brown and crunches under footsteps. Trees go into shock and begin to die, water rationing is announced and the dry season comes in like an unwelcome guest and overstays its welcome.
Sometimes, the floods come and entire neighborhoods are swallowed up and roads disappear under newly formed lakes and rivers of rushing water. It seems the rain will never stop. The damage is irreversible and the clean-up and restoration takes years. Mountains of damaged goods are piled by the road to be picked up with nowhere to go. Mold grows. Tears fall. Lives are changed forever.
Many of you reading these first few paragraphs have already begun to connect the parallels between rain and life. I love nature; all parts of nature; good and bad. God’s way of teaching me through nature connects me to this place that I call home and connects me to Him as the Creator of it all.
So let’s learn.
There are times when blessings are flowing like steady rain. God feels close and I am walking His path. His path even seems pretty clear and things are good. I would call life calm and gentle. There is a relaxed stillness in my soul even if things are extremely busy on the outside. You have felt that too, right? I am learning to cherish those times and not take them for granted. If you are sitting in the gentle rain of blessings, stop at this very moment and thank God for this precious time of life.
“I will make them and the places around My hill a blessing And I will cause showers to come down in their season; they will be showers of blessing.
God is very clear in His word that we will have trouble.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. John 16:33a
The dry parched times of life can leave us weak. Our dedication and resolve starts to diminish and we feel like giving up. Sometimes crawling through the desert of our life in search of just a small drop of water to make us feel like we can carry on. There seems to be no help for us. God, where have you gone? Are you here? Do you see me? Even in a crowded room we can feel alone. We don’t feel like we have seen a drop of rain blessing in weeks. We are dry and cracked and it seems that one more thing and we might just erupt in a giant fire that burns us to nothing. As Christians, what keeps us moving? How do we push through until the rain falls again? The answer comes in the second half of that verse.
But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33b
As followers of Christ, we thirst for the living water. We long to sit in the valley with our Savior and feel the gentle rain once again fall on our lives. We call out, we pray, and we trust. God kept His promises to David and He keeps His promises to us now.
O God, you are my God! I long for you! My soul thirsts for you, my flesh yearns for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. Psalm 42:1
For I will pour water on the parched ground and cause streams to flow on the dry land. I will pour my spirit on your offspring and my blessing on your children. Isaiah 44:3
Even in the dry season of life something good comes. God leads us even when we are too dry to feel it. He still loves and still protects. My favorite part is in this next verse. Isaiah 58:11. He strengthens our bones. Precious friends, our desert experiences strengthen the very framework of our faith. It exercises our belief system and fortifies our confidence in Him. The watered garden is an even healthier and more vibrant garden that has had to endure strength and push its roots down deep to survive.
The Lord will always lead you, satisfy you in a parched land, and strengthen your bones. You will be like a watered garden and like a spring whose waters never run dry. Isaiah 58:11
The flood. Oh the flood. Sometimes the deluge comes and the danger is real. A catastrophic event in nature, the sudden accident, the terminal illness, a broken relationship, a wayward child, uncontrolled anxiety or depression, horrible choices with serious consequences, and the list goes on and on. Trouble rains down on us in sheets. We can hardly breathe and at times feel that we are drowning. The waters rise and begin to destroy things that are special to us. Things and people are washed away like scraps of wood. The destruction is monumental and we know our lives will never be the same.
From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. Psalm 61:2
He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
he drew me out of deep waters.
He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
from my foes, who were too strong for me.
They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
but the Lord was my support.
He brought me out into a spacious place;
he rescued me because he delighted in me.Psalm 18:16-19
Cry out to God. He will reach down and draw you out of the deep water. He will lead you to the high rock. Now, here is the hard part. He may or may not rescue you from the situation. However, He will keep you from drowning. He will strengthen your resolve to push through. He will be your rock and your support. And, the best part of all – the promise of the spacious place! We know the end of this story. We know the victory that has been won for us. Call out, reach out, take His hand and go to the Rock of your salvation.
As I complete this writing for today, there are still clouds completely covering the sky. But, the rain has stopped – for now. The birds are singing as loud as their little voices can sing. The geese are floating on the pond and all is right with the world.
Praise God for His never ending love and for the beauty of His creation.