Friday, March 12, 2010

Finding Favor in the Rain

I know I am behind in posting these days (and I have so much to tell you!) but today it’s raining in Nashville and I was reminded of a post I wrote last year. Our situation hasn’t changed very much, but I think our spirits have. God has definitely been teaching us what it means to trust and seek Him alone. So enjoy this repost, and I hope it encourages you today. Find favor in the rain. :)

Originally posted May 6, 2009

I really did not want to blog this morning. I have tried to blog several times over the last month or so but the words just don’t come out right. I want to inspire and motivate my readers, not bring you down, but the truth is that the past few months it’s been harder and harder to keep the mantle of inspiration and encouragement on.

This morning I woke up to more rain. Like much of the country, Nashville has been getting downpours recently, and we may have to change our name from Music City to Noah’s City if the weather continues like this!

I got ready and made my way upstairs to the office and sat down at my desk only to hear the sound of hard showers on my roof and at my window. And I sighed. Not a happy sigh, either. A “why does it have to keep raining” sigh. And then I realized I wasn’t just thinking about the weather.

I felt God directing me to do a word search on Bible Gateway on rain. And here’s the verse he led me to.

Proverbs 16:15 – When a king’s face brightens, it means life; his favor is like a rain cloud in spring.

Favor like rain clouds? Really, God? That’s a hard one. Because I don’t like getting wet when I’m not dressed for the beach or a pool party. I don’t like driving in rain because I always worry I’m going to hydroplane and wreck my car. And I don’t like how rain cancels out the fun – playing outside, going to baseball games, even cooking on the grill. Not as great when you’re having to do it under an umbrella.

Favor. A rain cloud in spring.

Now that I think about it, it’s true the grass has never been greener (or higher, for that matter). The flowers are definitely enjoying their bath, albeit a longer soak than they probably needed. And there’s certainly something fun about having a movie night in with the family.

But what about the rain that’s been coming down in my life, God? In my family’s life? Is that really favor? Because it feels more like frustration. It feels a lot like getting wet, getting soaked some days, with no dry towel to be found.

We have been waiting a lot lately. Waiting for answers. Waiting for checks to arrive. Waiting for something to happen. With no umbrella over our heads.

I was reminded a while back when I was going through the Beth Moore Esther study to stop waiting on the thing and instead, wait on God. I’ve tried doing that, but the rain, er, the waiting, has been getting to me. Maybe Noah’s wife felt like this too. Can you imagine being crammed into a boat with all of those smelly, noisy animals and critters, peeking your face out to the sky through a tiny window and seeing nothing but rain drops? For 40 days?

And worse, peeking your head out and seeing the blue sky finally appear from behind the dark clouds, only to be told by your husband that you can’t leave yet because the water is still too high?

Favor? A rain cloud in spring?

We have seen God’s hand of protection and His provision during these last 10 months. We have seen our marriage strengthened despite the trials we’ve encountered. We do see the opportunities on the horizon. Though they still remain farther out than we’d like, nevertheless, they are God’s promise that He hasn’t forgotten about us.

And maybe that’s the favor that comes with the rain clouds in spring. Because only after the storms pass, does the growth take place. The growth isn’t always pretty – weeds can spring up with the blooms. More care is often needed after the showers leave. Clean up is required.

But without the struggles, we’d never see God’s promises come to life. We’d forget the favor He bestows on us each and every day, in ways great and small. And He does give us favor – through a supportive friend, an encouraging phone call, a loving hug from a precious child.

Without the rain, we would never see the rainbows.

God, show me your favor today in the rain.

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