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Posts Tagged ‘Rainbows’

“Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”
John 4:48
Just as the windy, rainy, stormy night was coming to an end, the sun rose in awesome splendorIMG_1433.JPG. The heavy, pelting monsoons had diminished to a morning sun shower. As I saw the bright light of the sun, and imagined it being refracted in the drops of rain, I anticipated a most perfect scenario for a rainbow.

With that anticipation, came hope …

What is it about rainbows? How is it that such a natural, frequent phenomenon can make a person, who holds tightly to logic, hop on the superstition band wagon?

I expect we can look to the Bible, and the story of Noah, for where our human, hopeful hold first began.

In the story of Noah, in Genesis (5-10), the Earth is filled with evil people. God has Noah built an enormous ark, fill it with animals, then board it, along with all of his family. The family are tossed around on the waves, while the Earth is erased of the rest of it’s inhabitants, for well over forty days and nights. When dry ground is located, and the ark has come to a stop, Noah and his family disembark onto terra firma, to start over.

Not only do they get to start fresh, but God makes a big promise to them … that he will never again flood the Earth, killing all living things in it’s wake. And, as a symbol to remind all of this promise, a rainbow will appear after the rains fall (Genesis 9:12-16).

When I see a rainbow, I am reminded of that promise, and I am filled with hope that it’s appearance in my day is a reminder that everything will be alright, that the days will be better and brighter (both figuratively and literally), that better days are ahead than those behind.

I wonder what Noah thought, what his family thought.

A rainbow … a symbol of a promise … a promise of life … a hope-filled promise.

… and they all lived happily ever after …

NOT!

Only about three hundred years after the flood, we have the story of the people, full of greed, full of sin, full of … themselves building a tower (known as the Tower of Babel) to reach the heavens.

And, only days after seeing a rainbow we get that undesired report from the doctor, our workplace is downsizing (and we get the pink slip), our spouse is no longer in love with us, we discover that our child is struggling with a drug addiction …

Where is the promise? Where is the life? Where is the hope?

The promise has not changed … nor has humanity.

Just like the man who asked Jesus to heal his son, in John 4, we too are looking for divine intervention … for signs and wonders.

But, it is Romans 8:24 that reminds us that hope does not have to be something we see, like a rainbow …

“For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all.”

There is no magic in a rainbow, that is simply the visual reminder that the unseen God is where our hope should rest.

 

 

 

 

 

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I can only remember seeing one rainbow, as a child. I know they occurred more often, I just am too archaic to remember seeing them! Or maybe, as a child there are so many wonders that catch your eye, a rainbow is just not all that exciting?

There is something about rainbows, about the wonder associated with them. They give hope.

There are two associations with rainbows that are most common. One is the association with a pot of treasure at one end of it. The other is that from the Biblical story of Noah, and the flood, and how the vision of the rainbow was one of hope of the future.

About eight years ago, I/we had an encounter with a rainbow.

You need a bit of background …

We were living in a great neighborhood, with great neighbors. But my house ‘wanderlust’ had set in … okay, that is wrong … MY house wanderlust is always present. Anyway hubby and I were away for a weekend in March … just the two of us (so sweet … and, although we were just away not even a month ago, I am ready to go again … my, I know how to digress!). While we were away, I made a declaration, “we need to find a place to live that is a refuge for you. A place where you can rest, relax, and ‘get away’ from the stresses of life.”

I can only think of three to four times in our marriage when I have made ‘a declaration’. And each time I did so, my jaw dropped, as I ‘heard’ what my mouth said, because it was not a thought that I had previously entertained. It was as though the words of my mouth were inserted by someone else.

A few weeks later, hubby and I agreed to ‘just look’ at a house that I loved. But when hubby called the realtor, it had already sold. So, hubby, decided to inquire about another, and got a date to go view it.

I was NOT excited to see this house. It was west coast contemporary … blech! I come from the east where houses are old and character-filled … contemporary might as well be the f-word in my mind. And worse, when we pulled up to the house, it was perched on a driveway, so steep, I was sure if a car was parked horizontally on it, it would tip over! But I LOVED the neighborhood! Less than eighty houses on tree-lined winding streets, with beautifully manicured lawns, tall trees, and all in a neighborhood that is so hidden away, there are people who have lived in our Township for many years that don’t even know it exists!

So, up the driveway we all (all five of us) climbed. Once at the top (and we caught our breath), we rang the doorbell, and were greeted by the realtor. We entered the house, and looked to the left, an enormous, but cozy, family room … I was adjusting to contemporary …

Then the rest of the house …

Then, the kids found the in-ground pool (which we more frequently call the albatross), and we saw the hot tub, and the so very secluded back yard!

We went back home, from this appointment to ‘just look’, with rose-colored glasses firmly on all five of our faces!

By 9pm, that night, we had hired a realtor, made an offer on the house, had it accepted, and had listed our own property …

(kids, this is NOT how to do this)

The decision was not an easy one, just an impulsive one. I remember so well hubby and I discussing what to do, and saying, ‘I just wish there could be … a rainbow in the sky … I don’t need writing in the sky, just a rainbow to indicate ‘go for it’ ” … but, alas nothing but clear blue sky. We went for it, anyway.

We had two conditions to the offer … one was a home inspection, and the other … selling our property.We were not worried about either. The inspection would be done by a professional, who we had used at an earlier time. The second should not have been an issue, because houses were selling before signs went up on the lawns! It was a sellers market, and we were confident!

The sign went up two days later, and the viewings began (and the fast food dinners began with the showings). After six days, we had had thirty-five showings, and our realtor wanted to sit down and talk (that is realtor talk for lets sit down and lower your price, because ten to fifty thousand dollars less off the selling price only affects him by ‘tens to hundreds’ of dollars … just sayin’). We sat down, and got the report. Our house was showing well, no negative comments, and priced well … this all sounded good. Then the predicted statement … ‘I think we should lower the price.’ But we were confident of our price, and held firm.

A week later, our resolve was weakening, as were were down to six weeks until closing, and the thought of living with two mortgages was unbearable.

Then, a last minute showing, where the realtor could not open the lock box, and we needed to let the viewers in, ourselves. They looked, they liked, and, by later that night, we had an offer … for the price we wanted 🙂

A couple of days later their home inspection, followed a few more days by the final paperwork!

We were cleaning up, after dinner, waiting for our realtor to come with that paperwork. As I rinsed the dishes I looked out to see a sun shower … such a cool thing to see! Then I ran to the front window (the one I had looked longingly out a couple of weeks prior, for my rainbow in the sky), confident that our ‘answer’ had arrived, and there it was … big and bright with one end near our home, and the other going in the direction of our new home.

I admit, despite the snickers of my kids (who have compared me to the ‘double rainbow’ guy from the world popular YouTube video … how many hours of combined labor did I go through to push their fat heads out into this world?), that I love rainbows. I love their colors, I love the possibility of there being a double rainbow, I love the hope that is re-birthed in the end of the rains.

There is wonder in the appearance of a rainbow, and that wonder re-ignites an innocence within me that makes me feel fresh and clean, and new, and gives me hope for the future.

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