Rain

I left my coat in the car that day. When I arrived at the office, the sky was overcast but it did not look like rain. The clouds darkened and during the day. “I need to go outside and get my coat,” I thought more than once. But by the time I stepped outside, it was pouring!

I ran across the wet, shining pavement to the car and got in, laughing.

I love rain! I love the sound of the drops hitting the roofs of cars. I love the appearance of the drops as a splash and pavement and sidewalk. I love how they make rivulets that form tiny streams going downhill. I love the smell of the air when it’s raining. It is fresh! Alive!

And we so need the rain. We’ve had a drought all summer here. That’s unusual for us. I live in an area of Oregon known loosely as a rainforest. We usually get about 200 days of rain a year. But not this year. All the snow has melted from Mount Hood, our highest peak. That doesn’t happen.

Rain reminds me of the old hymn “There shall be showers of blessings.” Do you remember it? Here’s the chorus:

Showers of blessing

Showers of blessing we need

Mercy-drops round us are falling

But for the showers we plead

Public Domain

Yes, we need rain. But more than rain don’t we need showers of blessings? Heavenly showers to clear the air between loved ones, to heal bitter hearts, to birth authenticity and hope!

This is what I long to see.

Sometimes it feels like the very air is crowded with controversy.

In some settings you mention masks or the mandated shot and people bristle. There’s tension everywhere.

One friend said he’s filled with anger because people haven’t gotten the shot and you ask someone else and they are livid people are getting it at all. Isn’t that a strange thing — the thing these two share is passionate anger. That’s perhaps a lowest common denominator!

The Governor of Texas has made it illegal in Texas for any organization to mandate the shot for employees. Yet, other Governors are ruling with the federal mandate. And today a Federal judge ruled in favor of health care workers in New York State— they must be given a religious exemption if they request one. Apparently, the NY mayor was less than enthused.

What a divide exists in this nation. Tension in the air. Don’t we need a spiritual rain to clear the air? We need showers of blessings. What might those showers look like?

You’ve seen it — Communication clears the air. I encouraged a friend to enter a meeting with some disgruntled people with curiosity and questions, not with opinions and judgments. Curiosity and questions are two aspects of communication that change the atmosphere in a room.

Whenever in a mediation, I’ve noticed how listening clears the air. It does so in any situation. If I can lay aside my strident viewpoints and listen, it does wonders.

Give people space to have the emotions they feel. Giving space — it can clear the air.

Take time out for silence. Monitor what you take into your life— news, podcasts, entertainment, etc. Choose to be still. Be silent. It clears the air.

Showers of blessings. Let God bring them through you!

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