I was scheduled for a large event that evening, and while I was enjoying a pre-event dinner the night before, I felt convicted to block two hours in preparation. Before I left the dinner, a couple people asked me to join them for lunch, and while it was tempting to enjoy their company, I knew I needed to stick with my prayer plans with God.
The sun was shining in the morning, but the storms were expected to move in sometime around noon. I chose a quiet park, so I could enjoy being surrounded by the serenity of God’s creation. The sunshine was beautiful, but ominous clouds hung closely in the distance as I settled in.
At first, the rain drops sporadically fell. They were heavy and full, making thuds on the ground around me. I slipped on a light jacket but decided to enjoy the rain falling on my head for a little while. I prayed for the refreshment of God’s provision, especially thinking of those deeply in need of knowing that God provides even (and perhaps especially) through the rain. As I closed my eyes and continued to pray, I could feel a darkness settling in. I prayed for those surrounded by spiritual darkness. I thanked God for carrying me through dark moments and seasons and recommitted a trust that he will continue to do the same in the present and future.
The wind picked up and the rain began to whip around me. I unfolded my umbrella and watched as the rain drops quickly gathered and rolled off the spines of the umbrella, dripping on and around me. I prayed for perspective as I got wet, yet not as wet as I could have been without a jacket and an umbrella. I prayed that I will not stubbornly stay in my comfort zone but will brave the challenges God sets before me.
As the rain and wind continued, I settled into prayer for the evening’s events, various relationships, faith-building experiences and much more. I recalled Scripture that emphasized my prayers, and I hummed several songs of praise. With about five minutes to go in my prayer time, the rain and the sky lightened. The sun peeked from behind the clouds, and as I lowered my umbrella, I felt only a light shower. I praised God for seasons of my life and the varied weather that makes it a richer experience. I thanked God that among the changes exists the consistency of his presence and will.
I thanked God for his faithfulness, and I was thankful for the prayer time he had challenged me to set aside.
The rest of the afternoon was hectic and challenging. Yet because of that time in prayer, I kept it in perspective. Every time a challenge arose, I thought of sitting in that rain. I thought of my commitments to and my trust in God. He reminded me of his promises. And I often laughed as I realized how sitting in the rain storm had actually been the “sunniest” time of my day!
I’ll welcome a prayer storm in my life any day.