The Rainy Days

raindrops splashing in a puddle

It’s raining this morning.

It’s beautiful. It’s soothing.

But it’s isolating and lonely. It’s inconvenient and restricting and… messy.

We all know that rain is necessary and healing for the land. We know that we can’t live without it, that there is a fundamental need that it fulfills.

At least we know that is true for the literal rain. But then there are the rainy days of a deeper, heavier sense: the rainy days of life when loved ones are dangerously ill, when bad news beats on our minds like hurricane gusts, when the instinct to hide or escape or self-medicate presents options we would never consider in brighter days.

Those days stir questions without simple answers and longings that just never seem to be fully met.

If you’re in one of those seasons, you may want to take a moment and reflect on this beautiful song of reminder.

This world, in all of its complex and intricate beauty and grandeur as well as its tragic brokenness and epidemic strife, is one of great and complex colors, almost never black and white. The joys of moments together with loved ones are stained with the longing for those no longer with us. The sweet solace of intimate love is tinged with the recognition that it is but a moment before the world comes crashing back in upon us.

We cannot escape the mess of this life that smudges and smears the beauty within it. But so easily we overlook the beauty that shines through the mess.

On a day like this, with the rain making its inevitable mess, I want to remind us of a promise that we who trust in Jesus have been given. It was penned by Paul the Apostle in his letter to the believers in Rome:

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”

Romans 8.28

I think it’s important that we remember what it does not say… because it does NOT say that only good things will happen to those who love God. That’s just not there. We’re all broken people living in a broken world. Bad stuff, hard stuff, painful stuff is going to happen.

Sometimes it comes as a direct result of something we have done or as the natural outcome of the choices we have made. But that’s not always the case. Sometimes really bad stuff happens to really godly people.

But the promise here is important. He didn’t say that bad stuff would not happen, but that He would work good through all of the things that happen in the lives of those that love Him, those that He has called for His great purposes. Do you know Jesus? If so, I want to encourage you, even on this rainy day, to trust the character of our great God and His power to accomplish good even through bad, painful, agonizing things.

And the greatest thing I often see Him do through these heart-wrenching days is to draw us closer to Himself. If you’re in the middle of one of those seasons right now where the mess seems overwhelming, I want to remind you that God is in the mess. He is here with you and He will hold you until the sun shines again.

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