Friday, June 14, 2013

Chasing Rainbows

I'm not sure how old I was when I started chasing rainbows.  Junior high, maybe high school.  I learned to recognize that mysterious way the sun splits through a black sky, and I could just tell:  it was a rainbow sky.  And I'd grab my camera and fly out the door on a mission.

As I drove home yesterday, the sky had that luminous glow.  Ominous clouds still threatened more than a drizzle, but somehow the sun had found a chink in the storm's armor and was letting the world know it was still there.  I searched the sky for the rainbow, that sign of hope, the promise that all is never lost, and it occurred to me that this rainbow chaser needs to apply the principle to the rest of her life.

Here I love to go on impulsive trips in search of God's colorful promise of old, yet I fail to look for the symbolic rainbows in my life.  Huh.

On a recent field trip to Mt. Saint Helens with #1's class, I was struck by the fact that wildlife survived such a cataclysmic eruption.  Whether protected beneath a layer of lake ice or in a home deep underground, after the ash settled, noses peaked out of holes and fins still wiggled back and forth.  And the narrator in the film explained, "where humans see catastrophe, nature sees opportunity."

And I realized that so often I allow the hard to distract me from the hope.  Whether it's cranky kids that occupy my thoughts or the messier stuff of life, it is too easy to dwell on the difficult.  I want to be more like nature.  No, I want to be more like God.  Yes, to acknowledge the hard stuff of life, to feel it's pain, but ultimately to focus on the rainbow.  To see in catastrophe the opportunity for God to ... be God.  To, as Kay Arthur so aptly puts it, "[grab] hold of God who already has a hold of [me] and [trust] He will keep His promises."

".... But if what makes you so very sad and miserable comes from Him, what can you say to the dear Lord?"  
Heidi had to think what ought to be done in such a case; but she was very certain that one could obtain help from the dear Lord for every sorrow.  She sought a reply from her own experience.
"Then you must wait," she said after a while with assurance, "and keep thinking; 'Surely now the dear Lord knows some joy which is to come out of this by and by, so I must be still for a little and not run away from Him.'  Then all at once it will happen so that you will see quite clearly that the dear Lord had nothing but good in His mind all the time; but because you could not see it so at first, and only had the terrible sorrow all the time before you, you thought it would always remain so."  (Johanna Spyri)

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