A soft rainbow graced the blue sky above as my friend and I traveled on the highway. We couldn’t help but look, feeling that something deep within demanded it. Not to do so would have been like disobeying our daddies when we were little girls and were told to stop at the curb before crossing the street. A command sprang up from somewhere deep within. Stop. Look. Listen.
The rainbow demanded our attention. To ignore it would betray our better judgment. No matter that we were searching for exit signs on an unfamiliar highway, we had to look. Against a beautiful blue backdrop, the colors appeared as if a paint brush had dipped into pastels of cotton candy and then spread its catch in three long simple curves right in front of our car. We stopped. We looked. And then, a few miles down the road as our car was pelted with a strong, unrelenting rain, we listened.
Susan said, “Usually, we see the rainbow after the storm. This time, we saw the rainbow before the storm.”
Her words sank deep within. How many times have I trudged through one of life’s storms, fighting my way to the other side and trying to handle it all by myself before looking up to recognize God’s desire to help me? When the storms of difficult circumstances are raging in my life, I can see nothing but the pelting rains of discouragement. Often, I search for a rainbow through tears that dim my view. But, the rainbow was actually there for me before the trouble began. God’s promises don’t begin during or after the storm. God’s promises begin before the storm.
Our place is to stop, look and listen. Stop to recognize God’s faithfulness to guide us. Look for his promises to strengthen us. And listen for his whispers of encouragement.