The concrete outside my window is starting to dry off. It has rained for about the last 30 hours here in Eastern Oklahoma and the ground is totally saturated with rain. Driving into work this morning, my prayer time was not nearly as productive as I would have like it to be because I had to spend a lot of my concentration power on just keeping it on the road. I hate the fact that when it rains and it is dark outside, the roads are really hard to see. But, the flip side of that is that instead of praying, I just took the time to listen to God. I’ve said it before, but our prayer time should not just be a time of us talking to God, we should spend some time listening because He will talk to us.
Anyway, I was reminded of a question my son 6 year old son asked a few weeks back. He wanted to know why it had to rain because it interfered with his play time. I explained to him that if we didn’t get rain, all of the plants would begin to die. Then we wouldn’t have any vegetables to eat. “But dad,” he interjected, “there are some vegetables I don’t like to eat.” I couldn’t agree more with him, but then I went on to explain that if all the plants started to die, then the animals would start to die and there wouldn’t be anymore hamburgers or chicken strips. I also explained to him that if the trees started dying, they wouldn’t pull the Carbon Dioxide out of the air and the air we breathe would become polluted. So, if the animals started dying and the air became polluted, eventually we would be effected and would also die. I saw the gears in that little 6 year old mind start spinning, and after a minute, he said, “Well, I guess I like the rain.”
Isn’t it amazing that the whole world depends on rain? But then I got to thinking about the “rain” of the Holy Spirit in our lives. As much as we need the physical rain here on earth, we need the “rain” of the Holy Spirit in our lives to sustain us! I realize that this might not be a profound thought to you, but what struck me is that when it rains like it has here over the last day and a half, things get dangerous. Low water bridges flood, water stands on the road and can cause car wrecks, hillsides get saturated and mudslides happen; life can be a bit dangerous. But if the “rain” of the Holy Spirit is flooding our beings, how dangerous would the Church be? Now there is a thought to ponder on for a bit. The problem is, we, as Christ followers, are a lot like my son, we find the rain (read reign of God in our lives) a bother and inconvenience because it interferes with our “play time.” God has not called us to a life of playing, He has called us to a life of obedience.
Then, I started thinking about the Holy Spirit and how I want Him to pour out God’s “rain” on, in and through, my life. Which led me to think about how dangerous God is (told you my thoughts are chaotic). I don’t think most Christ followers understand just how dangerous God is! If you don’t believe me, read in the Word about Nadab and Abihu, the son’s of Aaron and what happened to them when they offered “…strange fire before the LORD” (Lev 10:1). Read about Uzzah, who reached his hand out to steady the ark (2 Sam 6:6-8). Read about Ananias and Sapphira and what happened to them because they lied(Acts 5:1-11). I have been guilty, and I think the church is guilty of being so used to His grace, that we don’t think about His justice and righteousness. Each of the instances I’ve mentioned, and believe me there are plenty more, are instances where our sinful nature came into contact with a Holy God. We take God so “for granted” that passages like the above trouble us. And to be honest, I can’t totally come to grips with all the implications involved as to why God’s judgment fell on these individuals, but it did. God was perfectly justified in it and I am so good with that.
To wrap this up, my summation thought was that as much as I want God to flood my life with His presence, I do not want to fall into the trap of presuming that He is just a God of grace and mercy. Yes, He is that, but He is also a God of justice and righteousness. I can’t help but wonder what is going to happen in my life, and in The Church, if our vision of who God truly is becomes clearer to us. I am praying that God will open my eyes to this, what about you?