It doesn’t take rain to wash your soul


Jim Honeycutt

Chaplain-Baptist Minister

Across the yard the cracks opened. The soil so dry under the blazing summer sun it appeared to be crying out for rain. The grass of the spring, so lovely and green, now wilted with large brown patches that crunched as you walked over them. In places the ground appeared barren, as the life had been stamped out by the ongoing drought that had descended upon our region.

The trees reflected their need, dropping leaves, drooping their branches low and humbling themselves before the testing of the sun. The fires across the county increased as the days of swelter brought dangerous conditions to our doorsteps.

Collectively, people spoke of the need for rain and wondered out loud when that time would come. Folks watched the sky longingly, waiting for any indication of favorable clouds, that might by chance let their blessings fall.

While around the country the impact of torrential rains brought devastation, many locals confessed their desire for summer storms to pass this way. Hoping each time a hurricane or tropical storm appeared in the gulf, it would sweep across the state and dump relief upon the weary dry soil. Water rations began in earnest, along with the state’s electric grid straining to keep up with demand. Day after day we watched the news on the local channels looking for answers. When will it rain? Why is it so blasted hot? How much longer will this last? Please, not another fire! 

And as the temperatures rose above normal, people’s patience with each other declined. Anger manifested. Offense took hold! For many, kindness and mercy seemed to have found refuge out of the heat, leaving irritability, testiness, and aggravation to rule the emotions. The longing for relief palatable, many began to cry out to God for rain. But some cursed Him.

They went about their self-absorbed lives, unable to humble themselves before their need. Full of ego, they laughed at those that cried out to the Heavens. Scoffing at the very idea of a Creator that concerned Himself with the lives of man. Looking to the sky, they reasoned that rain comes as nature dictates, not by some mysterious movement dictated by an impersonal deity.

I watched the weather reports last week, as the promise of solace appeared to be headed our way. Frustrated, as each weatherman’s prediction dissipated, the clouds seemed to part before reaching our area, leaving us once again without satisfaction. Aloud I asked, ‘Lord why can we not receive rain?’

At the first sound of the thunder’s clap, my heart leaped with hopefulness. Then as the clouds released their downpour, a weight lifted. A heavy sigh escaped my lips. Lifting my face upward to the heavens I thanked my Jesus for the blessings falling around me.

Thank you, Lord, for the blessing of rain, thank you for once again reminding me of my dependence on You. You are my source of hope, You are the Creator. All the earth belongs to you. Forgive me when I doubt Your intentions and look outside of Your will for solace. Not only do you sustain me, You hold all things together according to Your perfect will. Father there are times that my spirit feels arid. Like the soil around me, I imagine cracks that are in desperate need of your life giving water.

Even as the lakes and the rivers are replenished by the blessings of rain, fill my cup, Lord. Wash over my soul and restore the joy of my salvation that I might testify of Your graciousness.

There is a longing deep within me, a desire to be known and to know the hand that created me. Not the physical kind of knowing, not even the intellectual understanding, but the kind that can only be manifested by The Spirit of a Holy God. Our city and the rest of the world have longings too. Some long for the touch of a loving hand. Some long for the touch of wealth and a life of ease. Others just long to survive, scrapping daily to keep their heads above the flood of problems that deluge their existence.

Many are unaware that God has longings also.

He longs to be gracious to you! Yes, you read that correctly, Jehovah God longs to be gracious to You. Ponder that for a moment. In Isaiah 30:18 after sending correction to His people He tells them through His prophet, yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of Justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!


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