Articles

Written by Justine Knight
From her column Around the Corner

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Again, I bring you good news and bad news. The good news is that the “good ole summertime” has returned—with the celebration of Independence (or Freedom) Day, sandwiched in between Memorial and Labor Day. The bad news is we have a presidential election brewing and even now the speeches of the candidates are endless. Although the actual election is months away, time will fly and, before you know it, we will have a new President that a portion of the population will neither approve nor admire.

We think of summer as the time for baseball, hotdogs, apple pie, and picnics, in addition to gnats, ants, flies, mosquitoes, heat, humidity, and prayers for rain. In my area this year, the prayers are for “no more rain.” Flooding has caused many in Oklahoma and Texas to plead with God to turn on the rain brakes. These prayers usually end with “if it be your will…” so God will feel free to say “no.” The total so far this year has broken all rain records which have stood since the beginning of rain records.

God probably wonders if any of us have heard about the drought in the West, e.g., California, and my guess is most of us have heard about it, but cannot imagine their plight at the moment, as we can only handle one disaster at a time—ours. How about we bottle up the rain, and ship it to the West Coast? That way we can kill two birds with one stone.

For the most part, I would never advise folks to stop praying. But since we prefer specificity, now might be the time to tell the Father, in our own gentle way, that the sunshine and rain schedule could be worked out better.

Further, at this stage of the year, many handheld video games are worn out, or the children are bored with them. Parents and guardians are exhausted trying to teach new “interior” skills or getting their kids to do something they consider worthy of their time that keeps inside activities to a minimum.

For the most part, Millennials want nothing to do with children as they are not fun persons to hang out with at the mall, and hanging out at malls is what Millennials do. Of course, Millennials also have their cell phones and use them constantly. I’m guessing their thumbs will be worn down at an early age—and their hearing will be gone sooner than that.

As for folks my age, summer is the time for harking back to the good old days with back-fence neighbors. Back-fence harking is more difficult to accomplish when rain is falling, but still ranks as a favorite activity of golden-agers—second only to taking bus trips together.

Most people my age would agree that road trips are “funner” on a bus together instead of driving alone—unless the rain is falling. On a bus, one doesn’t have to worry about driving skills. This allows us to stress over the bus driver’s skills instead. No one sets a timer on your discussions, thereby eliminating the need to be logical or succinct. Still, there are times when following what you believed to be an enlightening discussion, some may wonder (perhaps aloud), “What were you thinking?”

“God causes the rain to fall on the just and the unjust alike,” according to Matthew 5:45. As a child, I thought rain was a punishment. Then I learned that in biblical times it was considered a blessing, as life in the arid land was dependent on agriculture—and, thus, the rain. Those droplets represented the presence of God. The old hymn “Showers of Blessing” speaks of the impact of this presence:

There shall be showers of blessing:
  This is the promise of love;
There shall be seasons refreshing,
  Sent from the Savior above.

I am thankful for these showers when they fall on us. It’s always a good time to be refreshed by God—even when it’s raining.

 

Justine Knight was raised in a parsonage and married to a Nazarene minister for more than 50 years.

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