Last July I sent out a blog post about the drought we were experiencing in Texas. I closed that post by asking people to pray for rain. This May we have seen the heavens open up, the lakes refill and the water restrictions lifted. Texas is experiencing record rainfall and we find ourselves praying for a little sunshine.
Many people have suffered in the tornadoes and flood waters and I am praying for the rains to stop, for their sakes. At the same time, as I hear the reports about the lake levels returning I find myself thanking God for our wet weather, because only God can send the rain and only God can stop the floods. (Jeremiah 14:22).
Human beings are capable of so many things. Our ability to create new ideas, new technology and new trends is one of the most obvious proofs that mankind was made in the image of the Creator. There are many things that happen in the natural world, however, that remind us there is only one God.
When God created the world, he made certain that we would be constantly reminded of his existence. We cannot make the sun rise each morning or the sun set each evening. We cannot make the skies rain and cause the rotation of the earth that holds everything in place. The natural world is an overwhelming reminder that there is a God far higher than any powerful position a human could attain. Our greatest needs are provided by God, but we can be distracted from this truth by the things of this world.
It is summertime. The rains will end and the hot, Texas sun will rise. But this year, the lakes are full and we know the drought has ended. God answered our prayers and we praise him for sending the rain. Rain is only one of our great needs, however. What else does God want us to pray for?
The world needs his peace. The culture needs his character. The church needs his leadership. God’s people need his priorities. All of us need to pray for God to do, what only He can do. One of my favorite passages in Scripture is Isaiah 55. Isaiah’s culture struggled with the same sins we have today. God’s people thought too highly and too often of themselves, and not often enough about their Creator. So the prophet gave them this message:
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:8-11).
Just as God is the only one who can send the rain, he is the only one who can bless his word and make certain it does not return “empty.” God has sent the rains to accomplish his purpose and he wants to bless his word as well. The words we speak, and the character we speak with, can be created by God today or created by us. Isaiah would want us to remember, God’s thoughts are different from our own. God’s plans will be different from ours as well.
Only God can send the rain to “make the earth bud and flourish.” Only God can author his words and his will in our hearts. We prayed for the rain and it has come. What else does God want to do, that only He can do, through us? Let’s pray for that now.