I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade today, but I must comment on the rainy season that seems to have a good grip on a major portion of our country.
Every where I wander, I overhear snippets of conversations complaining about the rain and chilly weather which seems to have my neck of the woods in a headlock.
I’m not Pollyanna – the character in the children’s novel by the same name written by Eleanor H. Porter – who always has an optimistic outlook. I become just as easily discouraged as anyone and don’t always “look on the bright side.”
So I’m not crazy about the chilling rain we’re experiencing either, but I think God is trying to teach me a lesson about complaining and His grace.
If you search hard enough you can find some great inspirational thoughts about rainy weather. Someone once said, “And when it rains on your parade, look up rather than down. Without the rain, there would be no rainbow.” True enough. I especially like the idea of looking up, not just to be an optimist, but to really look up to God, who is there for me in balmy weather as much as baleful times.
Supposedly the legendary baseball player Satchel Paige once said, “Don’t pray when it rains if you don’t pray when the sun shines.” I like that sentiment. How often I turn to God in prayer when I’m saddled with burdens, but I need to converse even more with Him when life is superb. He wants to hear my praise and my joys and my thankfulness.
One of my all-time favorite Christian music artists is Michael W. Smith. I’ve seen him in concert a couple of times and his music never fails to inspire me and bring me closer to the God I worship. I’m not certain in what context Smith said this thought, but I appreciate his words. He said, “Healing rain is a real touch from God. It could be physical or emotional or whatever.”
That reminds me that rain washes away the dirt and grime, making earth clean and renewed. Isn’t that what God did when He saved me? He removed the ugly from my life, washing it away, making me clean and whole and yes, healed and renewed.
In the Old Testament, Deuteronomy 11:13-15, it is written, “So if you faithfully obey the commands I am giving you today – to love the Lord your God and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul – then I will send rain on your land in its season, both autumn and spring rains, so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and oil. I will provide grass in the fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied.” God, in His omnipotence and omniscience, knows exactly what I need when I need it. He provides what I need, even the rain in my life, to bless and bring me into closer fellowship with Him.
Many years ago when I was a college student, I read several works of literature written by the late American writer John Updike, but I never realized until recently that he was a believing Christian. I found this quote by him and for me, it is a keeper. “Rain is grace; rain is the sky condescending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life.”
Grace does fall down on me like rain, it washes over me, it cleanses me, it redeems me, and then it renews me. And without grace, I would not have life.
Instead of complaining about the rain, I’m choosing today to rejoice just as the prophet Joel told us in Joel 2:22-24 (New International Version) -“Be glad, O people of Zion, rejoice in the Lord your God, for he has given you the autumn rains in righteousness. He sends you abundant showers, both autumn and spring rains, as before. The threshing floors will be filled with grain; the vats will overflow with new wine and oil.”
Despite my propensity to allow dreary weather to affect me negatively, I will rejoice this day. Why? Because I know Jesus as my Savior. My joy, my fulfillment, my satisfaction is in Him alone. I want to serve Him, to know Him better, and grow in my relationship with Him. I pray you will desire that “new wine and oil” as well.
Finally, here is a quote by another American writer. Langston Hughes said, “Let the rain kiss you. Let the rain beat upon your head with silver liquid drops. Let the rain sing you a lullaby.” Please let the following video sing over you and let grace fall down over you like silver liquid drops of rain straight from the Father’s throne.