Finding Hope in the weeds

Today is day two of rain.  Real rain, not the spitting type of drizzle that often comes after meteorological predications of rain in California.  The kind of rain where I put towels out at the doors to keep the animals and kids from tracking mud through the house. The kind of rain where I wonder if anyone has a rain jacket that fits anymore (noting that they really don’t wear rain jackets anyway).

Growing up in California I have lived through droughts.  We Californians know the “rules” and wait for the next season of rain where predictably the newscasters warn about flash flooding and debris flows.  The news thrives on fear.  But despite those reports that highlight that fear, when the rain comes, it brings with it hope.

This week I don’t need to water my plants and truthfully, I was not letting them die after investing the time it takes for flowers to bloom. (I will take a shorter shower, but those flowers are going to live!)  Amid this drought, I notice something. The yard is mostly parched and dry and all but the select few things that I water or have deep roots have died, yet the weeds continue to grow. Many of them grow in the cracks, grow in the dry ground, grow where nothing should be living.  And then, they bloom.  Small flowers. Maybe just for a day.  Maybe for a week. But a reminder of life and beauty and hope during a dry season.

I think about my own life.  It has seen its seasons of drought.  The seasons where I sow and pray, and the harvest never seems to arrive.  The land is parched, and I thirst for rain. The seasons I spend wondering if God hears my cries.  I know the rain will come, but in the drought seasons it can be so very hard. Waiting, thirsting, cracking. Today I choose to look for the weeds. Not what I hoped for, but glimpses of life. The places where hope pushes through the cracks or grows into something beautiful amidst the dry ground.  The flower that blooms, even if just for a day reminding me that even in the drought, we can find beauty and hope and that yes, someday soon the rain will come.

As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. Psalm 71:14 NIV

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