“But Kelly, if we didn’t first have the rain, we’d never have rainbows.”
~Jaidyn Larae, 7 years old
The sky was quickly darkening and the weather was just beginning to spit. I held tightly to my niece’s hand as we maneuvered through the Target parking lot. Earlier that day, I told her we would go to the park later that afternoon. That was no longer an option though and I had just finished telling her how sad I was the rain had spoiled our plans.
“Don’t you like rainbows?” she continued.
“Why yes, Jaidyn,” I answered her. “They’re actually one of my favorites things.”
“Well then, first it has to rain.”
She said it so matter-of-factly I actually laughed.
Isn’t it funny how the innocent remarks by children can be the most striking?
Jaidyn’s question was so simple, it’s answer so obvious, yet her words slowly and gently seeped deeply within me.
So much so, that I find myself here, this Tuesday morning, still thinking about it…
Rain can be gentle, at times almost healing, with it’s presence like a caress. And in my opinion, there are few things that smell as wonderful as freshly mowed grass right after it rains.
Then there are the storms, the deluges and the floods that devastate, causing destruction and wreaking havoc.
Our reaction to rain varies too:
Sometimes we hide and run for cover, seeking anything which offers us protection from the storm.
Other times, we simply toss the umbrella and dance.
But, what has me still thinking about Jaidyn’s words is the rainbow.
What is it about rainbows that make the storms worth it? Their beauty? Well yes, rainbows can be quite captivating. At times even breathtaking when you have an arc that stretches across the entire sky. Is it their brevity? There have been times when I’ve pulled off the road just so I can watch a rainbow before it fades…for I never know when I’ll get to see another one.
Or perhaps it’s their promise? Long ago, God made a promise and gave the rainbow as a covenant to never destroy the world by storm.
I think that promise is true for us too when we encounter the storms life brings our way.
We all go through circumstances varying in degrees of severity. The rains may physically beat us down, leaving us mentally debilitated or emotionally drained and exhausted.
But, they don’t have to destroy us.
For our Hope is greater than our circumstances.
The Bible teaches us to “be thankful in all circumstances.” Notice, Paul isn’t saying to be thankful for all circumstances, but in them. Truthfully, there are many storms I am not thankful for and I think it would be absurd if I was. However, during these times, I am thankful for a sovereign God in whom I have placed my trust. My praise is not based on the conditions of the storm, but for who He is:
The Lord is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. Those who know your name trust in you, for you, O Lord, do not abandon those who search for you.
~ Psalm 9:9-10
I once heard it said that “God cares more about your character than your comfort.”
That being the case, I believe we should not only be thankful in all circumstances, but also for what God does through them. So while I may not be thankful for the storms, I am grateful for the opportunity to grow, to refine and to one day give a testimony crediting and glorifying Him for my endurance.
Finally, I am thankful for the way God provides through all circumstances. The time spent in the storm can be difficult: I am grateful for the people who stand with me in the rain.
Hmmm….and all this comes from a simple question about rainbows.
Rainbows are promises.
Promises from a God who loves us, who is greater than our understanding, and whose ways are far beyond anything we can imagine.
I think I’ll be seeing rain in a different light now.
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