Forgiveness does not mean condoning what has been done. Forgiving means abandoning your right to pay back the perpetrator in his own coin, but it is a loss that liberates the victim.
- Desmond Tutu
Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth. (Hosea 6:3)
It’s been a full day in our home school classroom, and the boys want to play outside. It’s warm enough. The sky is shaded gray, but there’s an excess of energy in this house and I learned long ago that it’s best to set that sort of thing free.
“Do I need a jacket, Mom?” Gabriel asks.
“A light one.”
“Do you know where my other shoe is?” Isaiah asks.
“Under the chair on the sun porch.”
I find my jacket, too, because I can’t resist being outdoors. The dog hears the commotion and dashes to the porch, tail turning helicopter-style. I bend to help Zay with his shoe, but soon Gabe is dressed and ready and he charges out the door. He moves across the patio but then stops fast.
“Mom!” he calls. “It’s raining! We can’t play!”
I’m still lacing a high-top, but I look out the porch door and see raindrops smattering the sidewalk. It’s not raining hard, but it’s enough, and I don’t want wet boys before dinner.
“Come on in,” I call. “We’ll play outside tomorrow.”
Gabe comes in and Zay frowns. I pull his shoes off and toss them in the basket by the door.
And that’s when the scent of rain rushes in.
It’s heavy and balmy. It’s clean and fresh. It’s something that we haven’t experienced for many months. It comes through the open porch windows and fills the room.
“Guys,” I say. “It’s the scent of spring.”
I push the door wide and let this blessing roll in.
I call for Samuel, and soon he’s rumbling down the steps. At first he thinks it’s odd, his brothers and me on the swing on the sun porch, being still and breathing deep. But we slide over and he joins us, too.
We enjoy the scent of hope.
The scent of promise.
It’s the rich, sweet scent of new things to come.
We stay like that for a good while. Watching the drops fall on the patio bricks outside. Being quiet. The old swing creaks with gentle motion. Greyhound Flash has fallen asleep at our feet, and he’s content, too.
We didn’t get to play outside today.
That’s all right.
God’s goodness came right on in.
Thank you, Lord, for the quiet blessing of spring rain. Amen.
Shawnelle Eliasen and her husband Lonny have been married for twenty-five years. They have five sons and raise their bevy of boys in an old Victorian near the Illinois banks of the Mississippi River. Their sons, Logan, Grant, Samuel, Gabriel, and Isaiah, range in age from twenty-one to six with Shawnelle home teaching the youngest three.
Shawnelle has been writing for six years, contributing regularly to Guideposts magazine, Daily Guideposts devotional and other inspirational publications. She would say that life with her men moves faithfully, on fast forward. But it’s her heart’s desire, her passionate prayer, to see God’s goodness and glory in the fullness of her days. She longs to see Him in the unexpected moments, unexpected places, changing the ordinary to extraordinary and bringing quiet, sustaining grace.