I wake to the sound of rain splattering on the porch steps as it pours through the unpatched holes in gutters left by hail in late June. Thirty minutes later, after a warm shower has washed the sleep from my eyes and cleared my thinking, I pour hot coffee into a large mug and continue to listen to the steady cadence of the rain as I take calf bottles and milk pails from the cabinet.
Jacob and I slowly sip our coffee as we don rain gear in an unconscious effort to delay the moment when we must step out into the storm and head to the barn. But eventually we flip on the back porch light, and with our backs to the light, we face the rain and the dark walk to the barn. A flash of lightning and a crack of thunder and for a moment I can see the little rivers running down the road to the barn before we are once again engulfed in the dark of night that blankets the morning hours before dawn. Another flash of light just as we reach the gate and I see a barn lot full of large puddles that almost connect to form a mini lake. Goats, calves, and chickens have all found shelter under the sheds and as I reach the barn, I too am thankful for its shelter and glad to be out of the storm.
By the time we have finished chores and returned to the house, my coveralls and my jeans are both soaked where they have been exposed to the rain between the bottom of my rain jacket and the top of my mud boots. And while I would never complain about the rain – especially after enduring four years of intense drought – I am thankful when I am once more inside and have changed into dry denim.
After the morning rush of packing lunches, eating breakfast, and shuffling boys off to school, I warm my coffee, wrap a sweater around my shoulders, and step out under the cover of the porch to listen to the gentle rhythm of the rain. I think about Jennifer Dukes Lee’s post yesterday at (in)courage on the light and I wonder where is the light on a dark, rainy, morning?
Lately it seems as though many of my mornings have been a bit cloudy as the return of rain to the plains has left me longing for days gone by and I am continually reminding myself of Ecclesiastes 7:10. While many times I feel much like the Psalmist in Psalm 42 and 43 who preaches to himself with these words, “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance and my God.”
With cup in hand, sweater pulled close, and lost in my melancholy thoughts, I walk the length of the porch and turn to the east, and then… I see it… there just below the clouds and just peaking above the horizon… there is the light!
And while I may not get another direct view as the sun slowly rises behind and above the clouds and the rain, the earth still lightens with the coming of dawn; and even though the rain still falls, I now can see what I could only hear a few hours earlier as the rain splatters on the sidewalk and pours into rain barrels.
Jennifer was right! The light does preach a sermon!
Even on cloudy days it is there above the clouds, its rays filtering through, reminding us that the morning still comes! The sun may not be bright when the clouds are low and rain is falling but it’s still there…we still have hope.
Even when our world is shrouded in clouds we do not walk in darkness because we have the light of life….Oh what hope! How our hearts should sing praise because we have a Savior who is the light of the world. (John 8:12)