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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Double

A thunderstorm blew through the Dallas area on Monday.

Nothing special about this storm, typical front that goes through on spring days around here, rain, dark clouds, a little wind, lightning and thunder.

It hit about dinner time. The radar predicted it. All and all, everyone prepared for it and remained safe. For example, I went to my Daniel’s place of employment a little early so that I wouldn’t be driving in it. I had to wait a little longer than usual for him to be ready to go, but it beat getting caught in the middle of the storm.

We went to dinner. The rain kept falling. Low, dark clouds covered the entire sky like night.

As we drove back to our current place of residence (a lovely Homewood Suites), I noticed to the west that the front had almost blown all the way through because I could see a distinct line between the clouds and perfectly clear sky on the horizon.

Judging by the time of day and the intensifying glow, I could tell the sun was fixing to dip below the bottom edge of that front line into the space of clear sky on its way to setting.

Chills swept over me as it occurred …

Rain clouds + rain + sunshine = rainbow.

So I made my Daniel drive me to the top of the hotel driveway, which is on a hill, to wait for the sun.

The contrast between the dark clouds and emerging light took my breath away.

After a few minutes, when the rays began to peek under their cloudy blanket, I got out of the car and turned around to face the storm in the east still pouring rain from over head. The conditions were perfect and anticipation wiggled through me like a happy puppy.

I felt the sun on my back dipping lower.

“Here it comes, here it comes!” I said out loud, jumping up and down a little in my now-soaked flipflops (because, you see, I love rainbows).

The next second, a massive arc of color appeared to my left.

The following second, another appeared to my right.

I watched as they connected at the top, completing the full, brilliant rainbow.

The dark storm clouds behind it just made the vivid colors stand out that much more.

In the cold rain that soaked me from blonde bangs to jean pant cuffs, I snapped and snapped and snapped pictures, which never capture the true beauty IMO, but I couldn’t help myself.

While I snapped, another full arc appeared above the first one, only slightly fainter in color.

I did more of my happy dance and took more pictures.

Now, I’m the kind who has to watch a rainbow until it fades away. I can’t stand going inside knowing that such a brilliant display of God’s love, promise, hope and artistry hangs there in the sky for my enjoyment. So, while my Daniel scooted into the hotel so he wouldn’t miss the beginning of 24 J, I stood in the rain (have I mentioned that it was cold?) and watched. And marveled. And pondered.

It made me think of my little mini-season I referred to a few days ago.

Storms are common in life. We all experience them. Even when we see them coming, the best we can do is prepare, to weather them, to wait. Avoiding them just isn’t an option. Some are worse than others, but they all have those ominous, treacherous-looking, inky clouds. Even if it doesn’t rain, they still blot out the sun.

When I looked to the west on Monday and saw the end of the storm in the distance, hope surged within me. I love knowing, or at least feeling, the end of a personal storm. By faith, I can see the Son emerging from the swirling darkness. I am reminded that He’s always been there, above the clouds, ready to emerge at the perfect time to shine and to produce blessings in my life. Because of His faithfulness in past storms, I can stand in the rain of my present storm jumping up and down and exclaiming, “Here He comes! Here He comes!”

Like the rainbows, often the reward for the wait and for faithfulness and endurance is double. And like the rainbows, the blessings are more vivid and brilliant against the backdrop of the blackest storm.

Are you in the middle of a storm? Or do you see one coming? Have you had enough freezing rain, gusty wind, dark, oppressive clouds?

Know that this too shall pass. When it does, look for the rainbows. They’ll knock your socks off!

One more thought - While watching my rainbow the other evening, every once in a while, I turned around to see the sun.

Without it, all I’d have is a storm. Look for the rainbows after your storm, but remember the Son too.

Happy Wednesday, Dry Ground friends!

(all photos are Lori originals!)

3 comments:

Susanne Dietze said...

Great post, Lori (and wonderful photos!). I've been in a storm for a while so I appreciate the encouragement you provided. Thanks!

lynnrush said...

LOVE it. Great pictures, too.

You're so right!

Amber said...

I love this post! :) I'm a big fan of rainbows too... just can't look away. What a treat you got that night!