So far this winter, Alabama has been a soggy, rainy mess. It has felt more like spring than winter, for sure. The gloomy weather can have a negative effect on your mood if you let it, but the rain is good for the earth and it can be good for you too. I read a quote this week that beautifully compared rain to our faith. “An umbrella cannot stop the rain but it allows us to stand in the rain. Faith in God may not remove our trials, but it gives us strength to overcome them.”
Rain can cause massive destruction if the area where it is raining is not prepared properly. Sin in our lives and a lack of faith will wreak havoc on us if we aren’t properly prepared for it. When we become Christians, we aren’t guaranteed a life free of trials, free of rain, but we are guaranteed that God will protect us and see us through to the end of whatever is raining on us. In Hosea 10:12, we are told to “Sow righteousness for yourselves, reap the fruit of unfailing love and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the Lord until he comes and showers his righteousness on you.” We must stay in constant preparation for the rain to come. Staying diligent will strengthen our faith when the rain pours down upon us.
There are also times in our lives where we feel as if the rain will never come. Our faith is dry, we are weak, our heart has been hardened by the world we live in. We are desperate for rain to pour down in our lives and it just isn’t coming. I have lived through periods of drought in my life. I have begged for rain and had to wait for it to come, but it did come. Sometimes in the heat of summer, the dry ground seems desperate for the rain to come. When we are waiting for God, we must focus on prayer and lean harder into our faith. “Be patient, therefore brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains. You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.” James 5:7-8
When the rain begins to pour down on our lives, when the blessings of God are raining down upon us, we must not forget where we have been. We must be thankful for the blessings we are receiving. Everything in our lives has a time and a purpose. Without a strong faith, we will feel as if our rainy season will never come. I have lived in the drought, and I have lived in the flood. “I will send you rain in its season, and the ground will yield its crops and the trees their fruit.” Leviticus 26:4 When the timing is perfect in our lives, the Lord will send exactly what we need. God knows us better than we know ourselves. What peace it brings to know that we will be taken care of, that the Lord will send us plenty of rain when the time is right in our lives.
This week’s recipe is a delicious chicken salad, but not your normal chicken salad heavy with mayonnaise. This chicken salad has a light and tangy dressing making it perfect for a yummy lunch or quick weeknight meal. And the best part of this salad is that uses those wonderful rotisserie chickens that are ready-to-go at your local grocery store. It will save so much time! Serve this over a bed of greens and with a piece of whole grain bread. This is sure to be a crowd pleaser!
“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8