I grip the wheel with both hands, lurch my neck forward as if two inches more might make these orange barrels and endless cement walls easier to see. Hemmed in, I snake for miles on a shrunken, shoulderless lane. Rain sprays from all sides, and I silently echo the wish of my six year old–for our car to grow wings so we can trade this turnpike route for a beeline home.
We chase the rain up the rolling hills until it hides in snow, then back to valleys where the sky shows again its pitter-patter face. So this is the foot April puts forward; and I have to say, it’s not her best. Only hours into the month famous for showers, and we’re already drenched. I’d roll my eyes if I wasn’t so worried about keeping them on the road.
I wish the May flowers came on their own, that they didn’t need April showers to escort them. I wish there was a way to grow without the mud, the mess, the soil-sloshed days of gray. Don’t you wish there were an easier way home? That joy didn’t bud so often beneath muddy suffering, that the abundant resurrection life sprang up before even one dark hour of death?
But Jesus knew what the rain was for. He knew there was no skipping it. And for the joy set before him, he endured death, even death on a cross. (Makes me feel a bit ridiculous for complaining about a few rainy hours on the turnpike.)
I pull into the driveway, finally home in this early April hour. I see the snow dusting my already soggy yard and it’s hard to believe that anything will change, that spring is actually trying, that a single shoot will ever bloom.
But I do. I believe.
Because in more than three decades of impossible seasons, He has shown without fail what the rain is for. He coaxes buds from the ground, raises beauty from the mess, reminds me there is no skipping it, convinces me this new life is worth every bit of the hard rain.
“Lord, not only in the roar of a hard rain, but in the dousing, dipping, drenching of our baptism, call us to live into that new life that is your resurrection. Amen.”
-From the Book of Common Prayer, A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals
By Jo Myles, MylestonesLeave a Comment
Perfect first read of the day.
It is worth the hard rain…
I Live in an Antbed says
Lord, rain on me! 🙂
I LOVE reading your posts (and subscribing to your blog!) I can so relate to what you write about! Thanks for pouring your heart out so creatively and letting God use your gift.
Holley Gerth says
Yes, yes and amen!!
This is wonderful Jo. 🙂
Teri @ StumblingAroundInTheLight says
Oh yes, the new life, after the rain, slogging thru the mud…it is worth it. It will be. Spring is slow to come, up here in the mountains of Colorado…but I believe it; it will be worth it!
I am always wishing myself out of the rain, getting so caught up in how much I hate the mud and damp that I lose sight of what it’s for.
“This new life is worth every bit of the hard rain.” I need to put that on my list of things not to forget.
Kelly @ Love Well says
I read this when you posted it, Jo, but I can’t stop thinking about it. It’s a hard lesson to remember when the rain is coming down (and in this non-spring of cool, wet, even snowy weather, it’s especially apropos), but it’s one that I’ve always found to be true.
You write beautifully, friend. You speak my language.