Thursday, February 9, 2012

Singing in the Rain

One of my all time favorite movies is "Singing In the Rain" with Gene Kelly, Donald O'Conner and Debby Reynolds.  My whole family would sit and watch it together laughing while my brother tried his best to imitate Donald O'Conner.  I can remember a number of rainy days when mom would take my sister, brother and I outside to dance and sing in the rain.  While I'm sure anyone nearby assumed we were crazy, we always had great fun.

The rain is going to fall - there are really few choices about that.  However, what we do in the rain can change our experience and attitude significantly.  One of my favorite authors, Holley Gerth, talks about "foul-weathered" friends.  A foul weathered friend is that friend which can be counted on to be around when the storms of life are at their zenith.  

A good friend of mine attended a Bible college in the early 80's that had the policy that men and women could not walk arm in arm unless they were sharing an umbrella.  When she was dating the man who was later to be her husband, she laughing told me that rainy days were among her favorites as that's when she and Gary could walk closely together under the shelter of their umbrella.  While everyone knows that you still get wet when sharing an umbrella, it was one of her favorite times as it was also when the person she loved could draw the closest to her.

The last week has been full of foul weather for me (metaphorically).  And in this time, I have found that my true friends - my foul weather friends (you know who you are!)- have drawn me close to shelter under the umbrella of their love and caring.  Yes, I still felt the effects of the storm.  It was impossible not to; however, I found great comfort, love and hope in having people who lovingly shared their umbrella with me.  They did this by sending encouraging notes and text messages, praying for me, being available to take me to the doctor and making me know I was loved and special to them.

Walking through the rain with my foul weather friends reminded me of the times when I would dance and sing in the rain with mom.  It was a time when we chose to laugh and enjoy each other rather than bemoan the weather.  This past week, I was able to sing in the rain because of my dear foul weather friends.

The lesson to be learned from this for me was that when things are the roughest, there are always friends who will then draw the closest, and it is through their friendship and encouragement that I can sing in the rain.  Walking arm in arm under the umbrella of God's protection and my friends' love reminds me that the storms in life, while unpleasant, can bring about things that are very pleasant indeed.

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