Last week I wrote about the retreat center where Jill and I went and spent the week. We ran to town and bought the surprise of kites. We spent the afternoon flying kites. I would like to share about another afternoon we spent together. This one was the Monday after we got there.
After a restful night’s sleep, we enjoyed a scrumptious breakfast, did a Bible study together, managed an hour nap and then went to lunch. While eating we discussed what we would do for the rest of the day as it had rained most of the morning. We finished lunch, went upstairs to our room and noticed the rain letting up and a sliver of sunshine breaking through the clouds.
“Let’s go for a walk, do a little exploring, get some exercise and work off this food we have been eating!” “You think it is done raining? It’s kind of dark out still,” Jill asked. “Naw, it’s starting to clear. Grab a jacket, get your shoes on and let’s get going!” I responded.
And with that we head out the front door and take off down the front driveway. There is only a spasmodic drizzle falling. We have our sights set on a big red barn about a mile and a half down the drive. It houses the conference center for retreats, weddings, reunions and other big gatherings.
I look back behind us and glance at the sky and tell Jill, “Watch, we’ll get down here and it will start raining.” After all, it is looking mighty dark south of us.
Well, we get to the red barn and…sure enough, it starts to rain. There is a huge front porch with rocking chairs. We plop down and decide to wait out the rain. And the sky opens up to a downpour of rain. So we head inside the conference center to explore while it rains…some more! It starts to quit, but we go back to the rockers and sit and rock for a while.
After all, nothing pressing we have to get to, and it is quite peaceful under a metal roof, rocking in a chair just listening to the rain.
As we rock, we talk, laugh and dream. We have nowhere to be at any certain time. No kids to pick up, no laundry to do, no meals to prepare, no visits to get to, meetings to attend, or sermons to prepare. So we just sit, talk, rock and watch the rain.
After about another hour, finally a break in the showers and we decide (well, I decide) this is probably our chance to head back to the house. We take off and I mention in passing a rather large tree, “Wouldn’t it be funny if it just started pouring?” No more do the words get out of my mouth and CRACK went the lightening and the sky opens. Yippee, we get to walk the next mile home in the rain. As we walk, we hold hands, talk, laugh and wonder what our hosts are going to say when they see their guests showing up looking like a couple of drowned rats.
We walk the next mile in what seems like an eternity. I am jumping in puddles, skipping and singing “Singing in the Rain.” Jill…she just walks dodging the deep puddles, shaking her head and laughing at her child-husband.
We get back to the guest house, totally drenched. As we come in the front door and push it closed we notice a basket. The contents of the basket, would you believe, umbrellas, four of them.
Again, we both laugh. I love my wife and am glad she humors her husband’s hair-brained ideas. I am glad we went for a walk and got caught in the rain, totally drenched (hair, shoes, jackets, clothes) and spent an hour walking in the rain. It was fun.
I believe this is what God would like to do with us, too. Go on a walk with Him. Get caught in the rain, run, laugh, talk and sit and rock in a chair beside Him listening to the rain hit the metal roof. No agenda, rushing to places to be or a mountain of things to do.
God loves us. The Bible says so, 1 John 4:7-11 and John 3:16. God went on walks with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:8). I believe God would like for us just to spend time with Him. Not time spent just in formal, ritualistic and structured worship, but also in spontaneous porch rocking, puddle hopping, rain skipping and singing walks. When the sun is shining or when it looks like it is going to pour down rain, we can take his hand and go for that walk. The only thing stopping you is you!
Puddle Hopping Preacher Bro. Tim