As I headed home today from speaking in Hot Springs, I gazed over the dusty hood of our Sequoia to the unfolding road beyond. Asphalt changed to concrete and back to asphalt from county to county. 95 degrees outside, a bank clock gleamed.
Somewhere southwest of Arkadelphia, the roads became wet, evidence of a recent rain. Slicing through the teasing steam vapors, I saw dark clouds over the tops of pine trees. I wondered, would I catch the rain? I was driving leisurely, listening to Mercy Me’s new CD, Coming Up to Breathe. Highway 8 is a two-hander at many places. S-curves and a few “tummy-tickle” hills contribute to the feeling that the highway department was drunk when they laid out this stretch.
The Sequoia’s tires laughed at its hood. They were enjoying the rare moisture. I heard the other day that more than 60% of the country is experiencing draught conditions. Yet, here was evidence of rain. The smell of fresh rain on a hot day wafted through the vents. I continued chasing the rain.
The lyrics to one song in particular suddenly made the wet-tires-dry-hood paradox deeply spiritual. The song is called “Bring the Rain:”
I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that I’ve gone through
The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You
Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It’s never really ever crossed my mind
To turn my back on you, oh Lord
My only shelter from the storm
But instead I draw closer through these times
So I pray
Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings You glory
And I know there’ll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that’s what it takes to praise You
Jesus, bring the rain
I am Yours regardless of
The clouds that may loom above
Because You are much greater than my pain
You who made a way for me
By suffering Your destiny
So tell me what’s a little rain
So I pray
Holy, holy, holy
“But if that’s what it takes to praise You, Jesus, bring the rain.” As the stripes flashed by, seemingly being eaten underneath my front bumper, I lfited my tinny voice to sing the chorus. Whatever it takes to praise You, Lord. Bring it.
Somewhere around Fordyce I caught the rain. My hood was cleansed. And so was my spirit.