I love thunderstorms and rainy nights in the summer. Rain in the summer is lovely, dramatic, soft, cozy. It isn’t threatening (usually). Rain in the summer seems to belong.

I imagine water droplets plopping in a lake, and rain soaking deep down in dry and gritty soil, nourishing root systems. I imagine sitting in a porch in the summer, listening to a soft rainfall, like a lullaby.

My parents have a swing on their screened-in porch, and I love to sit there. I don’t actually  take the time to sit there often enough, but when it happens, it is a calm, peaceful place. I think listening to the rain while relaxing on a porch swing should be on everyone’s must-do list in the summer. We all need to stop, relax, and reflect.

My parents' swing... where I grew up

My parents’ swing… where I grew up

A few recent rainy days made me pause and think and pray.

I have been praying over conflicts for the fall schedule. The meshing of schedules and ideas and clubs and plans and classes is all coming to a head. I experienced knots of anxiety this past week that were a new feeling to me. I’ve felt nervous before — but this felt different.

I looked at the schedule for the year ahead, and it was like a puzzle that didn’t fit in any way that I could figure out. 

“God,” I cried out, “I need your help! I can’t see how this is going to work. Please show me what you want. How do you want this to work? Please make it clear, what I am supposed to do.”

I am waiting… and He is answering.

Stopping and listening to the rain made me feel like walking away from the busyness of schedules. For a moment, I thought about just shoving all these plans down the chute and moving to a farm surrounded by trees, with a creek in the back yard, doing my own thing. Oh my, some days, I tell you, it is awfully tempting!

Truth is, though, I really don’t want to give up some of the “good” things that God has brought to life. Maybe what I want is to get away from some of the associated difficulties with being involved.

Truth is, I can’t just pick up and easily move to a farm. My life is already intertwined with others’.

Farm or no farm, rural or urban– I guess involvement is what the Lord wants. He wants us involved– to grow us, teach us, instruct us, guide us. He knows these are learning opportunities for us. The hard things, the bumps in the path– those are part of the journey; in fact, that IS the journey. The life-journey is not a smooth path with manicured perfection on either side of the road. It’s a bumpy ride, my friends, with weeds and brambles on the way!

Thankfully,  He walks ahead, and beside. The rainy days? They are gifts, and the days He waits for us to say, “God, help me. I can’t do this on my own. I don’t have any of the answers.  But I trust you, and will follow you.”


Sharing with Laura at The Wellspring, Jen at Finding Heaven, Jennifer at #TellHisStory, and Emily at Imperfect Prose