Monsoon season is here. Scenes of bare trees, sun-scorched hills and dry rice-lands are gone. The landscape is a lush green. The heat hasn’t changed much and humidity is up, but the green world looks cooler. Nature’s fresh beauty is testifying to the difference the rain makes.
Some years ago we ran a prayer room in one of the city’s night-entertainment zones. Two years in a row the Ping River, swollen by the monsoon rains, overflowed its banks and flooded parts of the city. The muddy water found its way in through shut doors and up through waste pipes, flooding the prayer room with 20cm of slush. Even after the room was cleaned, the damaged furniture and mud line on the walls were reminders of the difference rain can make.
We’ve all seen images of the effects of rain, the good and the bad. While one community celebrates the filling of depleted dams and irrigating of land for a new rice-planting season, another mourns the flood-damage to homes or loss of lives in a catastrophic mud-avalanche.
God dresses his promise to bless in the metaphor of rain (Hos 6:3). He can shower his goodness on us as individuals, or send a downpour of the Spirit that revives the church and awakens a community. Unlike the natural order, God’s rain is free from the chaos of the Fall. His rain is an expression of his kindness. The effects are not a mix of good and bad. Pleasant-good and unpleasant-good, yes, but never bad. The rain of his Spirit refreshes, restores and nourishes, and it’s easy to get excited about these pleasant-good blessings. We’re less likely to celebrate the unpleasant-good blessings, when his rain brings ‘mud’ to the surface, and exposes hidden sins and lifestyle choices that don’t agree with him. But we can’t be selective and welcome one effect of his rain while hiding from the other.
Asking for the Lord to come as rain is not a luxury; it’s an essential to living with longing for him to make a difference. His rain is not an inevitable, seasonal feature. He waits for us to want him enough to ask. And to do so from rest, welcoming (unconditionally) ALL the Spirit wants to do in us, the pleasant- and the unpleasant-good, to bring about landscape changes……. in us and through us.
Join us in asking for a growing ‘wanting’ of the promised rain of God’s Spirit:
- in the Thai church
- among frontline, mesage-bearer teams
Click on the comments option below and share your thoughts on the question:
How can we move from believing about God’s promised rain to wanting it?