I have a confession. Over the years I have been guilty of selfishly praying for it not to rain.
I have looked at my schedule and determined that rain would only slow me down. Other days, I would look in the mirror and determine that since I had just had my hair done, I really, REALLY needed God to let the rain pass over – at least until I got to my final destination.
When I coordinated weddings I calmed many nervous brides especially regarding the weather – because of course, the reception was more important than an impromptu rain shower.
To be clear, I know that my prayers did not stop the rain. Yet I mention them because in my concern for the things I felt important, I did not give much thought to the other things that were even more important and desperately needed the rain. Crops, livestock, lakes and lawns all need a healthy dose of water to be vital and life giving. The rain keeps the cycle of life moving.
As we have seen this summer, the absence of rain is devastating to food production and can contribute to wildfires in an amazingly powerful way. We need rain. Yes, rain may be inconvenient, messy and humidity invoking, but it is needed.
Likewise in life, we need our rainy experiences to help us grow. I never would have selected to go through many of the struggles that I have gone through. Even this year, for the first time I dealt with the struggle of having an employee violate company policy and abuse sacred trust. While it hurt, and had a seemingly non-stop trickle down effect, it also sharpened me in so many ways. That storm taught me how to forgive more readily, mentor more diligently, teach more thoroughly and stand even more adamantly for what I know is right.
While I would not have designed the situation – I most certainly see the buds of growth that come from the rain the storm brought. Not only was I improved; every member of my staff had the opportunity to see the pain that sin can bring and the healing the love and forgiveness provides. God will use our rain to bring our harvest.
This week, thank God for the rain.