Thursday, February 4, 2010

They Ran Through the Rain Believing

I found this beautiful heartwarming story from Bob Perks I had to share with you. I hope you really enjoy it!

I listen. That's where my stories come from.

I speak. That's how I get to meet the most incredible people.

But sometimes just listening from afar is enough to fill my heart.

I don't always need to say hello to bring a perfect stranger into my life. Conversations overheard can provide life lessons even more powerful than conversations we are actually a part of.

Not long ago I had a brief encounter that filled my day - and my heart - to capacity. If only they knew the gift they gave me.

She must have been six years old, this beautiful brown-haired, freckle-faced image of innocence. Her mom could have posed for a Norman Rockwell painting. Not that she was old-fashioned. Her brown hair was ear length with enough curl to appear natural. She had on a pair of tan shorts and a light blue knit shirt. Her sneakers were white with blue trim.

She looked like...a mom.

It was pouring outside. The kind of rain that gushes over the tops of rain gutters, in such a hurry to hit the earth that it has no time to flow down the spout. Drains in the nearby parking lot were filled to capacity, leaving huge puddles to lake around the parked cars.

We all stood there under the awning, just inside the door of the Wal-Mart. We waited, some patiently, other aggravated because nature had messed up their hurried day.

I am always mesmerized by rainfall. I get lost in the sound and the sight of the heavens washing away the dirt and the dust of the world. Memories of running, splashing carefree as a child come pouring in as a welcome reprieve from the worries of my day.

Her voice was so sweet as it broke the hypnotic trance we were all caught in.

"Mom, let's run through the rain," she said.

"What?" her mother asked.

"Let's run through the rain!" she repeated.

"No, honey. We'll wait until it slows down a bit," Mom replied.

The young child waited another minute and then repeated her statement. "Mom... let's run through the rain."

"We'll get soaked if we do," said Mom.

"No, we won't, Mom. That's not what you said this morning, " insisted the young girl as she tugged at her mother's arm.

"This morning? When did I say we could run through the rain and not get wet?"

"Don't you remember? When you were talking to Daddy about his cancer, you said, 'If God can get us through this, He can get us through anything!'"

The entire crowd stopped dead silent. You couldn't hear anything except the splashing of the rain. We all stood quietly, waiting to see what would happen.

The mother paused and thought for a moment about what she would say. Now some mothers would laugh it off and scold the child for being silly. Some might even ignore what she had said. But this was a moment of affirmation in a young child's life. A time when innocent trust could be nurtured so that it would bloom into faith.

"Honey, you are absolutely right. Let's run through the rain. If God lets us get wet, well, maybe we just needed washing," Mom said.

Then off they ran. We all stood watching, smiling, and laughing as they darted past cars and, yes, through puddles. They held their shopping bags over their heads just in case.

They got soaked. But they were followed by a few believers who screamed and laughed like children all the way to their cars ... perhaps inspired by the little girl's faith and trust.

I want to believe that somewhere down the road in life, that mother will find herself reflecting back on these moments they spent together, captured like pictures in the scrapbook of her cherished memories. Perhaps when she watches proudly as her daughter graduates... or as her daddy walks her down the aisle on her wedding day.

She will laugh again. Her heart will beat a little faster. Her smile will tell the world they love each other. But only two people will share that precious moment when they ran through the rain believing that God would get them through.

And, yes, I did.

I ran through the rain.

I got wet.

I guess I needed washing.

"Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow." Psalm 51:7

Today's Tip: Relive those childhood memories, run into the rain, splash in those puddles and let God wash you clean!

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