A storm blew in during the night. Over the mountains surrounding our home the wind rushed, attacking with force. The sky poured down swords of ice water. Tall trees sagged under the weight of the onslaught, losing limbs in the fray. The battle was short but fierce.
The old homestead and garden are experienced warriors, battle scarred but sturdy. In the light of day, we gathered around the warmth inside, watching water now softly fall from the sky, soothing the critters outdoors and calming the one’s inside.
Rainy days, both literally and figuratively, can be difficult. We are constrained by the pouring around us that makes everyday tasks a little more difficult. Protective gear gets hauled everywhere we go. Avoiding deep puddles requires that we pay more attention than we normally do. Should we, despite our best efforts, still get soaked, the feeling of being bedraggled is discomforting and constraining.
What if, instead of seeing rainy days as a burden to be carried about and endured, we see them as a gift from God?
The Southern hemisphere is deep into winter, so I sat beside a fire, listening to the crackling in the hearth. The sound was comforting. Not so the jarring noises that are found online, on TV and on my phone. My rainy day was a gift to myself away from outside distractions.
Family gathered around warm drinks and spoke to one another – enjoying the exchange of ideas and opinions. The art of conversation is an endangered species in our world of short sound bites in less than 30 second videos. Talking a matter through from every angle broadens the mind and makes us understand our world and our problems a little better.
Playing ‘pretend’ with my grandchild took me to foreign shores in our sofa car cum-boat-cum-space rocket. We explored the far regions of the galaxy where the good things of life, like cookies and candy, magically grow like flower petals ready for the picking. Stuffed animals speak out simple solutions to problems encountered along the way and you never run out of fuel to get where you want to go. In this land of Pretend, there are no rules and nothing is insurmountable. We are limited only by our imagination.
Cleaning out my desk drawers while the rain splattered on the windowpane was comforting. Deciding what was actually needed and what was simply being hoarded was a satisfying exercise. Tidying up and making sense of clutter is a liberating experience.
I wrote a few letters. There are people in my life who support me, encourage me, speak straight with me, who pour unconditional love into me – people who are quite simply my friends. I wrote to them and loved them back.
At this point the rain stopped and my creative side kicked into full gear. Looking from a different perspective will do this for us.
If we see them as a time to change our rhythm and lean into the tasks laid before us, rainy days can truly be a gift from God. A gift that refreshes us, strengthens us and sets us on our path with new eyes and clearer vision.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28
Featured image (first one) by Taylor Leopold. All other images belong to Michelle Tessendorf