Showers of Blessing
Let it rain!
It’s hard to understand unless you’ve lived in a dry and thirsty land what it means to see rain come in. The Bible is full of references to rain as a “blessing” because the Holy Land has a Mediterranean climate where rain only comes in winter.
When I first moved out of the US, I lived for six years in Jerusalem. It was my first experience with that climate where it didn’t rain for the entire summer, while the land baked in the severe dry heat. Dust covered everything. Then, in the fall each year, rain would start one day, and it was so exciting that little children would run to the window and exclaim with excitement, “Rain! It’s raining!” It was celebratory! And muddy! That first rain mixed with all the dry dust was always pretty messy.
I went on to live in other countries and cities where rain was more prevalent. Rain eventually lost its excitement for me, particularly in Bordeaux where it rained almost every day! Moving to Madrid several years ago, which has a similar climate to Jerusalem, brought me back to those hot, dry summers where the first rain signifies relief, rejuvenation, and even respiration, when the air is fresh again.
As I write this, a storm is moving through Madrid. I feel like I could literally run out and dance in the streets (and I have, obviously! Here’s the proof of me dancing in Plaza Mayor). It’s been so long since I’ve seen a rainy day. For just a few minutes, it’s breezy and cool. And in those moments when the rain breaks the intense heat, I know why God promised the prophets Joel, Hosea, Isaiah, and others that He would send rain. I understand why God promised the prophet Ezekiel, “I will send down… showers of blessing” (Ez. 34:26), because in a dry country like this, all rain is a blessing.