I had a restless sleep last night. One of those nights where one wakes up suddenly and the first thing that comes to mind is a new burden or an ongoing trial. Usually I can remind myself there is nothing I can do in the middle of the night so I should relax and let sleep once again take over. I'm not certain what made last night different but sleep would not take hold until the early morning hours.
I am well aware that the enemy of our souls loves the dark. As I've written before, what seems a burden we can handle in the light becomes overwhelming in the dark of night. All I could do was pray and be thankful when a deep sleep finally held.
When I woke up this morning, I was feeling quite "poorly" as my mother used to say. I poured a cup of coffee, took my insulin (for it was already late) and a piece of fruit with me to the living room sofa. I was very thankful my stomach was not so upset that I couldn't have my morning coffee. That, indeed, would have made for a bad day. :)
I opened the large living room window and immediately heard the sound of a good, soaking rain. The kind of rain for which a farmer prays after weeks of drought. Summer rain is one of my all time favorite things. Unlike rain at other times of the year, it rarely makes one cold. Even then, I was thankful for my flannel housecoat as the breeze came through the curtains but it was a welcome chill after 90 degrees heat recently. I shared the sofa with an elderly cat who was quite content to curl up with the warm flannel. The sound of rain...and peace...a good thing.
A little later, a reminder of the source of my latest burden came once again and I found myself retreating to my front porch, taking with me my Bible, a book, my cell phone, reading glasses, and a cup of tea brewed stronger than usual. One knows I'm in a hurry to retreat when I brew my tea in a large cup rather than my normal "ritual" of brewing it in a favorite teapot. No...this time the tea was to warm the chill, not to bring comfort.
I probably sat on my porch, watching the pouring rain for at least an hour. I would read some Psalms and then a little from my book..but mostly I listened to the rain. When one is almost in the rain, you hear things you don't when listening through a window or screen. There is the sound of an almost infinite amount of raindrops hitting an equal number of leaves, especially when one lives at the edge of a forest. If you shut your eyes and listen closely, you can hear the singing of a variety of birds in the trees. It is as if God was performing a symphony and the rain was the musician.
I found peace as I listened...and read...and rocked in my rocking chair. Faith builds when one allows peace to take the place of worry. Faith and fretting cannot inhabit the same body, at least not at the same time.
God didn't say we would not have troubles, he said he would rescue us out of the troubles. He spoke not only through His Word but through his creation of nature...and the rain. The farmers were not the only people thankful for that sound today.
Photo: Water Baby and the Moon Print from Art.com