A History of Rain in My Life (Or, Why I Enjoy Thunderstorms)

Lately it’s been raining a lot here.

Raindrops pitter-patter down. Puddles pool. Miniature ravines flow through the cracks in the dirt and cascade around pebble-sized boulders, bending the blades of grass that get in their way.

Branches droop under the sopping weight of the misty-eyed droplets, and leaves shine bright like polished silverware beneath the glistening sheen of fresh rain.

And I stand at my kitchen window and watch it all unfold.

There’s something soothing about the rain, the rhythmic songs it sings as it slaps the ground and fills the gutters. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always invited the rain. Looking at the skies turning gray and the winds turning cool and hoping that the rain is on its way.

When I was younger, my parents would let us sit on the front porch when it was raining. We had a porch swing out there, where I’d sit and watch the strings of droplets fall down like crystals all around me.

And when it began to thunder, we took no fear because my parents insisted that it was just the angels bowling and a clap of thunder was when one got a strike! We would yell and cheer and invite the thunder to boom again. Even now, I smile when I hear thunder rolling in.

I went to college at a school where you walked everywhere, even in the rain. Couched in the foothills of the Appalachian mountains, it seemed that storms would find a way to settle over our little utopian university and stick around awhile, taking their time before passing through.

So much so, that in freshman orientation they advised each student to bring three umbrellas because you’d invariably go through that many. I got used to the routine of rolling up my jeans and learning to ignore the puddles that splashed my ankles as I made my way to my classes. It became something of a rite of passage, slopping your way across the cobblestone streets and kicking up dirty water as you went.

Over the years, rain has become soothing, something of a balm to my soul.

You know how sometimes, you just need a good cry? How there’s something cathartic when the tears fall? The rain does that for me. As it cleanses the ground and the cars and the sides of buildings, so it cleanses my spirit. The old and dirty and haunting yesterdays get washed away. Everything becomes fresh and new again as the clouds trail past.

There’s a Misty Edwards song that goes, “I’m waiting in this desert, just waiting for the rain. I’m waiting in the wilderness of promises yet fulfilled. I won’t leave this wilderness until I see the rain. I’m waiting for the rain…”

Because as surely as we know the rains will come, we also know they will pass. We know what lies beyond them, the Hope—that ever-present rainbow looming in the distance—that awaits us and points us to a new day.

As the lyrics continue, she sings, “I can see the clouds gathering now. Are you ready for the rain? Open up the heavens, and let it rain!”

I’m ready. Let it rain.

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  1. I also love the rain. There's something about it that makes me slow down

    1. Yes, maybe that's God's way of keeping the Sabbath active in our lives--making us slow down even for a moment at a time...

  2. I loved this post.

    I too, LOVE the rain...and thunderstorms. My parent's house has a large porch and two benches (one a swing way back when). I remember many evenings on that porch with my dad watching the thunderstorms come and pass. I still like to sit outside when storms come, usually with a cup of hot tea.

    The rain does seem to renew everything it touches, but only when it passes can you tell the difference. Thank you for reminding me :)

    1. Oh what a good observation: "The rain does seem to renew everything it touches, but only when it passes can you tell the difference." So true for storms in the weather but also the storms of life, too!

  3. Beautifully said, Carmen. I enjoy a rainy day, though only if I don't have to drive far in it. Too many hydroplaning incidents. ;) But I do love the sound of rain and the smell of it. I remember once maybe two years ago my siblings and I all went outside when it was raining. We went out in the street and danced around, had a water balloon fight and just enjoyed it. :)

    1. Oh good point. I don't like driving in a hard rain, either. Hydroplaning is the scariest!

      I did something similar with my roommates in college, when we went and jumped in the pool at our apartment complex in the rain. Something soothing about mixing water and rain!


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