Grace Like Rain

The hostile fury whipped up without warning.  North wind blew.  Words rained menacing. Doors flung wide.  Toys crashed broken.  Foundation cracks carved deeper still. And Momma raged on.

“I thought I slayed this monster!” I screamed into the wind.  ” I thought I slung stones at your huge, horrid forehead!”  Let me explain…

Nine days without Daddy.  Seven days deep in the throws of, well, throw up.  Five days of “un-school”.  Three nights of 3AM insomnia.  And one weary soul ready for reinforcements.  His face was a beloved sight. We rejoice.  We play when we “should” be studying.  We eat out when we “could” eat in.  We let loose while clothes pile instant on the once-empty washroom floor.  Toys hastily breed in the living room like rabbits.  Food flies over “no food” zones.  Everything is bliss.  Right?

The thunder rumbles. And I thought rousing the tempest was a more difficult task than this.

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“I don’t feel like I belong here,” he says.  “You control every detail.  Sometimes I think you’d rather live without my involvement.  Sometimes I think you’d rather live a single Mom life.”

“Sometimes I think that too.”

Blatant truth spun stormy and the words flogged even my own ears.

Single-parenting singles out the parent in each of us. When he’s on a trip, I alone make the decisions. I alone set the standards.  I alone make the mistakes. There are no parental disputes.  There are no contradictions. No, “Go ask you Dad” or “Well, that’s not what I said.”  I am it.  I drive the bus.  And yes, shamefully, sometimes I think I would rather hold that power position. Sometimes…I think I would.

As this ogre roars, little feet scatter. Their hearts break wide from the ricochet. His eyes abandon mine and foundations crack.  Leaving dry, parched gaps in our relationships.  Fissures that plead for water.  Living water. Grace-filled water.

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Hallelujah, grace like rain falls down on me

Hallelujah, all my stains are washed away, washed way {Todd Agnew, Grace Like Rain – click here to listen}

And Daddy. He’s the one who gathers the brutish clouds. Sits patient as the thunder rolls. And prays that Grace like rain falls down on me.

I’m the one pointing the fingers and He’s the one holding my hands. I’m the one brandishing the clenched fist, and he unlocks my limbs and rights me in the driving rain. Drenched down to my stony heart, He holds me up in Grace, as all my stains are washed away, washed away.

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In John 13:38 Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for me? Truly, truly, I say to you, the rooster will not crow till you have denied me three times.”

Is that what I’m screaming as I wake the sleeping giant?

No Lord, I don’t want your standard! I want mine.

No Lord, I don’t believe just remembering you love me in this mess will deliver me from this mess!

No Lord, I don’t want you to change me.  I want you to change him.

No Lord, I don’t think You’re enough.

I deny Jesus when I assume I am my only deliverer. I deny Him when I presume that my world is mine to order and control. I deny Him when I believe my reputation is staked on your acceptance of my “righteousness.” My monstrous desire to be “right” tramples my feeble desire to be forgiven and free{Click to tweet}

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Like the rain soaks the ground, I receive His righteousness, His Grace.  I receive it all for free.  Like unsuspecting soil, I receive Grace in unmerited favor.  Like parched, dry terrain, Grace falls without finding fault in my guilty land.  The drops descend to wash away my stain.  To offer a promise of new Life.  All Free.  “There’s nothing I can do on my own to find forgiveness. It’s by His grace alone. I trust in Jesus.” {Trust in Jesus, Third Day – click here to listen}

No.  I don’t think I’d rather live a single Mom life.  I never really did. I was just too busy clenching my fists at the rain and wondering why it thundered at me in response.  Too busy raging at my idol of self-righteousness for having the audacity to collapse in the wild wind of the storm.  Too busy cracking under the pressure of my own standards.

Isn’t it times like these when we need someone, like him, to gather the brutish clouds, sit patient as the thunder rolls, and pray for Grace to fall like fain?  Pray for the storm to wash me clean.  Pray for the healing waters to saturate my dry, parched heart? Isn’t it times like these when we’re most open to the quenching waters of the gospel? The Grace like rain?

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Julianne Scott Photography

Would You Pray with Me?

Dearest Jesus,

I have sinned.  Help me repent.  I have been offended, as if I am the standard.  As if I am god.  Forgive me for placing myself up on the mantle.  For holding my husband to the standard of my ideologies.  For demanding he bow down to my ways.  Show me how to love as you love. Mercifully.  Compassionately.  Selflessly.  Giving only what is needed.  Not seeking worth in who I am but rather in whose I am.  For I am Yours.

Amen.

Notes of Encouragement:

Words of Affirmation:

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4 thoughts on “Grace Like Rain

  1. This post brought tears of familiarity. You reveal the raw images of many military homes. We were not designed for the singleness. When we fall into the trap of self-sufficiency, we eventually come undone. Praise God for His forgiveness and for the gentleness of a godly husband! We are lost without GRACE!

      • 1-remember the routine that is followed when Dad is home. 2- plan ahead together about how the time will be spent when he first arrives (if possible.) 3- be real. Remind yourself and your spouse that you were the sole shot-caller, but you aren’t going to be after he arrives. Before the next trip, talk about what would work for both of you. Want him to jump in and take over for a bit? He can (you know he’s capable.) Does he want to rest? Agree that you will continue “running the show” for a couple of days. If you are both on the same page, there are no false expectations. Have you ever laid out your responsibilities? What’s his job when he’s at home? Acknowledge what you “pick up” when he leaves, so that you can “lay it down” when he returns. It’s all about communication. Before he returns, be clear about the state of things at home. Are you overwhelmed? Problems, sickness, etc. got you down? Let hubby decide if he is willing and able to come rescue you. Sometimes he may need time to undo the effects of the trip, so be prepared to hang on a few more days, even after he gets home. TALK, don’t EXPECT or ASSUME, either of you. Then that wonderful GRACE of God can flow freely and easily cover the bumps that come anyway.

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