“Longer the dry spell, bigger the rain”
My salt-of-the-earth “Poppa” made this comment as we chatted about the barren brown land that is becoming the Darling Downs, Queensland. My grandfather is an umpteenth generation farmer with hands as rough as his heart is tender and God-fearing. Living on the land, he’s learned its rhythms.
I can remember being hushed fiercely at the dinner table as a child when the weather segment appeared on an otherwise underused TV. I can recall watching home videos of hailstorms tearing through the farm and destroying a harvest-ready crop. I remember the sting of the sunburn I acquired while my cousins and I cleared sticks to ready a paddock for a new crop.
Nowadays, my very comfortable, urban lifestyle can sometimes mean I forget about the seasons. That is until their increasing brutality brings me to mild inconvenience – I might even have to turn up an air-conditioner or unearth a jumper.
But I’m inspired by my Poppa’s faithful and reverent attention to the rain, hail and shine. The Bible tells us There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens Ecclesiastes 3:1. So often I am blissfully unaware of the heavenly activity God is orchestrating within me and those around me. The ultimate Farmer is always sowing, growing, pruning and harvesting within his people. He is bringing about storms and big rains, he lords over drought and natural disaster.
When I pay close attention to the work of Farmer God in spiritual seasons, I learn his rhythms and I trust his timing. Farmer God is also a kind and patient teacher, and often he has graciously let me stand with him in the fields and clumsily pick up sticks or scatter new seeds.
My Poppa will very soon be receiving another round of chemotherapy – a season not easily ignored. There is a great peace in knowing that Farmer God reigns over it all. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end Ecclesiastes 3:11. My eyes are fixed on Farmer God’s every move – even if I do not fully understand his ways, I know that “the longer the dry spell, the bigger the rain”.
God, thank you for your attentive, heavenly work within me. Thank you for the times you have been faithful, trustworthy, and oh so kind, again and again. Help me to pay attention to your movements and work beside you in all seasons. Amen.