Good afternoon to all on this beautiful Tuesday. Funeral Arrangements for Mother Delitha Campbell are as follows:
Viewing (10:00 a.m.) and Celebration of Life (11:00 a.m.) will be held at Grace UMC on Friday, September 9, 2022
When I woke up this morning, hearing the sound of the rain was like music to my ears. Because of the lack of rain in our area, the grass has turned brown and the farmer’s soybean crops have begun to show signs of suffering. Even the streams that flow steadily with water have dried up. It is amazing how rain can reinvigorate what looks as if it is dead. When looking out the window this morning, the grass appeared to come alive and the streams of water were flowing again. In this instance we see rain as a blessing.
This is the season to start your fall garden, but because of the lack of rain, it has probably delayed the process. It is amazing what God can and will do. We must remember that it is in God’s time and not in ours. As one of our dear friends always say, “I am not complaining, just explaining.”
Too often we take those things that sustain life for granted. I had to remind myself this morning that most of the earth’s surface is covered with water, and most of the water is not drinkable. With that being said, the realization of the importance of rain becomes a priority in our living. It has been said that 97% of the earth’s water is salty water, therefore making it impossible for animal and plant life. That is why rain is so important to survival on earth. I would think all of us would agree that we use water so freely that it might be considered wasteful. Just imagine what life would be like if there was a shortage of water. We think the pandemic has impacted us negatively, a water crisis would be a death sentence for sure. What we must remember is that rain is a gift from God, and we should express gratitude to Him for it.
Mississippi is presently experiencing heavy rains and flooding, and there is a dire need for water in Jackson, Mississippi. Every now and then some righteous person will determine that catastrophes such as this hit places where people are not living according to God’s commandments or laws. What we do know is that God is in control of the rain, floods, etc., but what we do not know is why it rains in one area and does not in another. Again, it is God, in his infinite wisdom, who knows such things. What we do know is that “He causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and unrighteous (Matthew 5:45). There are farmers who God considers to be his friends and farmers considered to be his enemies. Regardless of the farmers disposition toward God, He gives sunshine and rain to all the farmers in equal portion. It is said that when God gives good sunshine and good rain to evil farmers, it is an example of God loving His enemies. In this instance, God gives good gifts to the good and evil. He gives rain to the just and unjust alike. Those people who do not worship Him and deny Him get to enjoy His blessings just as those who do worship and love Him. We are admonished to do good to those who hate or do evil to us.
Aren’t you glad that God is in control of the weather? When we listen to the meteorologist, we must remember that they predict what the weather is going to be, but God is the one who sends it. Because of the meteorologist, I have not planted my fall garden, but I should have relied on Ecclesiastes 11:4-6. It says, “If a person waits for perfect weather, he will never plant his seeds. And if he is afraid that every cloud will bring rain, he will never harvest his crops. You do not know where the wind will blow. And you don’t know how a baby grows in its mother’s body. In the same way, God made all things. But you can’t understand what He is doing. Begin planting early in the morning, and don’t stop working until evening. This is because you do not know which things you do will succeed. It is even possible that everything you do will succeed.”
Because food is also what sustains us, we must appreciate and give thanks to God for the bearing of fruit due to rain. I leave these words with you from Leviticus26:4, “Then I will give you your rains in their season, and the land shall yield its increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.”
May we today receive this message of rain as a blessing from God, for we know there are times that God has used rain as a blessing.
Not a sermon, just my thoughts!
Robert Earl Slade, Pastor