Monday, March 9, 2009

Thank you for rain, Jesus

With the onset of spring comes the rain. Oh, glorious rain! The rhythmic sound of drop after drop upon our roof as we go about our daily business sounds like sweet music.
Who doesn't love a good rainstorm when we're inside looking out - curled up in our favorite chair with hot tea and a book? Or setting at our place of employment all secure and dry?
We're comfortable enjoying God's creation. Bring on the thunder and lightning!

Envision the same rainstorm but instead we're outside. It's chilly as we huddle in a vacant doorway. The lightning flashes and the puddles grow deeper. Our pant legs are getting soaked, along with our only pair of shoes that we can't get out of until we return to the mission in six hours. Oh, if only we had that comfortable chair and hot tea now.

Those two scenes are from different people. Different in this world, yet not so in God's eyes.
Now, intertwine the people in those scenes, and we come up with lunch in the park last Saturday. Every day in the park is different, but God stays the same - faithful, loving and always in control.

The rain poured down, but by His grace, we were prepared! We stuck a large beach umbrella up over a bench and had a couple large umbrellas for use. We still didn't comprehend the awesome time God had planned.

We hope and pray each week that more brothers and sisters will feel the love of God and be comfortable eating lunch with us. Some do. Others step off to another corner of the park. Regardless of what happens, I trust that God is working. Still, I am weak and want to know if seeds we plant will bear fruit. This is a flaw in me from which I seek deliverance, because I know we're supposed to walk by faith, not by sight.

This day, a beautiful thing happened... since we had raincoats and knew we could get warm and dry later, we held out the umbrellas for our brothers and sisters to stand under and eat.
So many came and stayed under the umbrellas to eat, keep dry and talk with us. They allowed us to care for them, which was a huge honor. Had it been day without rain, I could tell some of them would have gone off to eat by themselves. God made a way for us all to interact on a more intimate level because of the rain. My words do not do justice. I am continually amazed that people want to spend time with us each week. Yes, free lunch is the avenue, but that they would open themselves up to share their lives is such a priviledge.

I am reminded of the scene in the movie, Facing the Giants, where Mr. Bridges comes into Coach Taylor’s office and tells him a parable about two farmers who desperately needed rain. Both farmers prayed for rain but only one of them went out and prepared his fields to receive the rain. Mr. Bridges asks, “Which one trusted God to send the rain?”

“The one who prepared,” replied the coach.

“God will send the rain when He’s ready. You need to prepare your fields to receive it,” states Mr. Bridges.

We prepared for fellowship in the rain by bringing umbrellas along with the food because we trust that each Saturday God has a plan. We cannot rely on our own understanding, but instead place our trust in Him. This week, let us "prepare our field" and wait for His miraculous grace to pour down upon us. We just may find blessings disguised as a rainstorm.

Thank you for all your prayers for those in need and for us. Please continue to pray that we stay humble and do His Will. Pray also that our brothers/sisters in need of housing and jobs find Christ along the way to the independence they seek.

May the peace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ reign in your heart, your mind and on your lips today and always. Amen!

1 comment:

  1. Right On . When God said in Matthew 21:22--"And all things whatsoever ye shall ask in my name believing ye shall receive", he didn't say, ask me and I'll think about it-he said , you do the believing, and I have the power to do the giving . It really IS as simple as that. W. Wright 11:10 am