I know you have all heard the phrase “when it rains, it pours.” The phrase seems to have defined the past few weeks for our city, our family, and our little church. Here in the Burgh, we have experienced some crazy precipitation. Snow melts followed by rain and temperatures in the 60s are leading to problems for this town that generally knows how to handle winter weather. But what can you do when the Ohio River rises to its highest point in 13 years? Roads were closed, landslides have been affecting entire neighborhoods, trees and roofs are being damaged, and the power has gone out for many families.
For our family, the rain revealed some issues with our new house that needed resolved as quickly as possible. In one week, we realized our basement takes on water during heavy rain, our roof was leaking (which led to some damp spots on the ceilings in two bedrooms), and our dryer was no longer functioning. In order to get the dryer up and running again, strangely enough, our best option is to completely replace our breaker box, which apparently is so old that the manufacturer went out of business about 40 years ago!
Through all that we go through in life, it may seem like the phrase “when it rains, it pours” only refers to difficult situations. But during this seemingly crazy time, we’ve also seen it apply to blessings. Through the physical, financial, and emotional “rain” of all that has been going on, God has poured blessing onto us and our church! Let us share a just few of them with you:
- During a small break in the weather this week, we were able to have a new roof completely installed, so we will not have to worry about it once #2 comes. The sun came out, and we had a chance to meet new neighbors and to interact with many neighbors we have not seen throughout the winter. We even found out about a few needs we hope to meet in the coming weeks!
- God has provided jobs for members of our Bible study who desperately needed them.
- We hosted a women’s event that rejuvenated many of the ladies in our group and introduced us to a new friend.
- God gave us an incredible spiritual conversation with one couple we have been praying for fervently over the last 3 months.
- We took a whirlwind road trip to NC and had a chance to visit friends and churches who partner with us in prayer, through mission teams, and by contributing financially to the church. Throughout the road trip, we were prayed for, encouraged, fed, housed, and loved in such beautiful ways. New partnerships were formed and old ones strengthened. It was refreshment for our souls!
You see, even in the rain, we are always reminded of God’s faithfulness! After all, He is the one who “makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matthew 5:45). Are the sun or the rain trials we cannot face? No! We serve the God of the universe, who is always working His plans toward the fulfillment of His promises and “for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). The promise we are holding to in this season? John 4:35b-36: “Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest. Already the one who reaps is receiving wages and gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. ”
No matter what this life brings, we pray to remain faithful to Him who brought us first to His kingdom, then to this city and these people, that we may see the harvest brought in and see both sower and reaper rejoice.