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