Whew! That was a close one. No sooner had we got the bean teepees up and the seeds in the ground, then it started raining.
At first a sprinkle, a spattering of moisture, and then look out. The skies opened up and the downpour began. Another day in the garden cut short by the weather.
It’s not the first time it’s happened. We’ve planned work days, carefully selecting a time when everyone can meet. Emails were sent. Calls were made. Bulletins were issued. And lo, everything was made ready at the appointed time. The tiller was brought forth, the yard stick, the twine, the rake, the hoe, the trowel, the gloves of the garden variety. Behold, all was in place.
And then, well, as Robbie Burns once said: The best laid plans o’ mice an’ men/ Gang aft a-gley.
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It’s easy to get frustrated. It is easy to get discouraged when it starts to rain. I’m busy. Others are busy too. We have little time to get out there as it is. And I would love for it to be completely convenient and worry-free. I want things to happen when they are supposed to happen. But in the garden, that doesn’t always work. You learn pretty quick that you can’t control everything. There are no office hours. There are no perfectly timed showers. There are no assurances of conveniently scheduled sunshine. All you know is that you don’t know for sure if the meteorologist’s promise will be accurate.
So you’ve got a couple of options. You can get upset about the rain. You can shake your fist at the sky. You can mope around and feel personally slighted that the weather is not cooperating with your plans. Or you can accept that rain happens and adapt.
The first option of being a rain hater will give you an ulcer and a headache. Believing you can control everything and make everything work, well, that just isn’t reality.
Thankfully, the weather gives us a second option. And it’s a lesson we all have to learn. Rain is going to come. Plans are going to get ruined sometimes. Things aren’t always going to work out in spite of all our efforts. And this is our chance to learn to adapt. See the challenge. Find the opportunity. Discover that God can even use this.
The group Crowded House put out a song not too long ago, called Weather With You. And it rolls through my head every time the skies darken. “Everywhere you go, you always take the weather with you.” In part of the song, the lyrics go, “Julius Caesar and the Roman Empire couldn’t conquer the blue sky.” Even emperors can’t control everything. So why should we think that we can?
“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.” (Isaiah 40:28) God is in charge. And we are not. No matter how hard we try to be. And even though winds shift, seasons change, storms brew, rain falls, God is still in control and always faithful to God's promise to love us. And there's not a spring shower or a torrential downpour or even a devastating typhoon that can change that.