Tonight I went home slightly drenched with rainwater but soaking with an important lesson in life.
I walk a good half kilometer from my office to the train station. On normal occassions, I go home around 5:00, but tonight I had to stay back to work on my quickly growing to-do list. It was already dark, which was a first for me, I’m not used to having the sunlight escort me home.
As I made it halfway through my usual walk path, I felt a drop of water hit my face. I thought it was just the corner cafe’s exhaust system playing up so I carried on with not much of a hurry. A couple of steps later, I felt another drop, this time much bigger than the first, and then another. Because the sky was already dark, I couldn’t really tell if it was going to rain or if my mind was just tired from the day’s work.
Just when I thought that I was only imagining things, down came a sudden, heavy rain. Thankfully, I happened to be passing by a covered garage door where I immediately took shelter.
Moments passed and I was still standing there, waiting for the rain to stop. I knew I should have brought my umbrella with me.
So I waited for another five minutes, and then another… but the rain did not show any sign of surrender. And so with faith as bold as my urge to get home soon, I prayed for the rain to stop.
In an instant, the once raging downpour had become more gentle (God’s miracles are real!). Immediately I knew that I had to run, otherwise the rain might get stronger again. So I sprinted my way to the train station.
I was running so fast that I stepped on a deep puddle of water and soaked my leather shoes and pants. The rain was still gently pouring so my suit and bag were also starting to get drenched. “This is still better than battling through that really heavy downpour,” I kept convincing myself.
When I got to the train station, the rain had completely stopped. And it didn’t rain for another ten minutes. I felt that God was telling me, “You asked for Me to stop the rain, so I did. But you were expecting less than a miracle, so you have not fully received my blessing when it happened”.
Indeed, I could have waited for another couple of minutes until the rain had stopped completely, walked slowly as I would have on rainless weather, and arrived at the station completely dry. But my stubbornness had caused me to grab the early signs of the miracle as if it was the miracle, and tried to help God answer my prayer. Today I realised that it doesn’t work that way. Because when we ask for a miracle, we have to believe that there will be a miracle, not just a coincidence or an opportunity that we take advantage of.
“As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the sons of Israel shall go through the midst of the sea on dry land.” -Exodus 14:16
Like Moses, we all should do our part and believe that our prayers will be answered. But as God instructed him to wait and see the miracle unfold, we also should wait in anticipation of what is to come. Because if we try and pre-empt the miracle, we only get to enjoy its build-up, and miss the entire thing when it actually happens. Imagine the Israelites grabbing their duckie floaters and trying to float through the sea as it parted, it would have been a funny scene.
I could have gone home completely dry, if only I fully trusted that He will do what He says He will do. And He doesn’t need my help to make that happen!