Monday, November 10, 2008

The Sun and the Rain

After several weeks of nearly-unbroken sunshine, it's been raining here all day, with plenty more expected through the rest of the week. The weather was so nice this weekend (during early November in Houston, the temperature rarely falls below 50 degrees Fahrenheit) that it's hard not to feel a bit let down now. At least--since as a self-employed person I tend to take more days off than are good for me--I have no excuse for not staying inside and getting some productive work done.

"The weather" is a tired old topic of cliche conversations; and unless things have just taken a major turn for the better, the largest part by far of the conversation usually consists of complaints. If it rains, we grumble about having to either stay indoors or fool with umbrellas. If it's sunny, we worry about our lawns drying out. The summers are too hot; the winters are too cold; and the remaining seasons are too chilly, too rainy, or too windy.

Often, the weather we're complaining about right now is the weather we were praying for two months ago. It would probably serve us right if we had floods and tornadoes more often, as with the Israelites in the wilderness whose story was one long record of whining followed by punishment followed by apology followed by forgiveness followed by more whining. How many of us are in the habit of daily thanking God for the weather, be it sunshine or rain or just free of natural disasters?

Try it right now. Look out the nearest window and say, "God, You are so good to give us the sun, rain, and snow in Your proper timing."

The sun shines down
And gives us daylight,
A welcome sight
When days are cold
Or after rain;
But in summers brown,
We moan, "This heat grows old!
When will it pour again?"

Rain on earth plays
And gives us moisture,
It's welcome, sure,
When days were dry;
But when it comes
On our picnic days,
We moan, "Turn off the sky!
We can't stand rain that drums!"

The snow drifts soft
In wispy whiteness,
A lovely brightness
For winter fun;
But when it's time
To clear it all off,
We moan, "Bring out the sun!
Why can't the days be fine?"

And so it is
With all God gives us:
When it relieves us
And need is clear,
We welcome it;
But how strange it is
When we in comfort sit
And wish His gifts weren't here!

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