I have never felt so grateful for rainfall than when recently watching the TUTS musical Oliver at the Stanley Park Malkin Bowl. Without our complimentary Theater Under the Stars panchos, we would have been cold and drenched. It is too easy to take rain for granted. The smoky Sechelt and Pemberton forest fires reminded us how much we need rain for our very existence. It was shocking to look up in the North Shore sky and barely see the sun through the thick smoke covering. A couple who live right near Panorama Park told me that Deep Cove had never been so smoky and covered over. I was reminded of the song ‘Smoke on the Water’ by Deep Purple.
Miriam Therese Winters wrote the song ‘Joy is Like the Rain’ at a very dark time in her life: “I saw rain drops on my window, Joy is like the rain. Laughter runs across my pane, Slips away and comes again. Joy is like the rain.” Little did she know that this song would end up being sung by millions of people around the world.
Many blessings in our life come in disguise. Only later do we realize how important they were to our development. Were you ever taught to count your blessings as a child? Sometimes that is easy. Sometimes that is very hard. Some families, like in Charles Dicken’s musical Oliver, seem to be flooded with tragedy and hardship. Oliver was born to a dying mother, sent to an orphanage, and tricked by a pickpocket gang. Yet in the middle of all this ‘rain’ and tragedy, Oliver’s grandfather Mr. Brownlow recognized a locket picture of his daughter, and realized that Oliver was actually his grandson. Joy is like the rain. Oliver had many blessings in disguise.
God has blessed each of us to be a blessing to others. The rain in our life is meant to bring a rich harvest in other people. Every blessing in our life is like a birthday present, just waiting to be unwrapped and shared generously with others. Don’t just store your blessings away in your attics. Blessings are meant to make a difference in the lives of your friends, family, coworkers and neighbours. Everyone needs to know that they are blessed and loved, that they have a heavenly Father who has a plan for their life. Jesus loves each of us dearly and wants us to know that no matter how hard life can get, he is for us and not against.
My prayer for those reading this article is that we may realize afresh that joy is like the rain, that the blessings in our life are sometimes right in front of our noses. What blessings can you be thankful in your life?
The Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin
-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier/North Shore News
Sandy Brown and her family have just moved to Spokane, Washington where her husband, Scott, is pastoring a new church. With a fresh start, Sandy is determined to devote more time to her four children. But, within weeks of settling in their new life, the Brown family is plunged into turmoil.
Sandy receives shocking news that her children aren’t safe, which brings back haunting memories of the trauma she experienced as a girl. Then, the unthinkable happens…
A brutal attack puts Sandy on the brink of losing everything she’s loved. Her faith in God and the family she cherishes are pushed to the ultimate limit.
Is healing possible when so many loved ones are hurt? Are miracles really possible through the power of prayer? Can life return to the way it was before?
Blue Sky reveals how a mother’s most basic instinct isn’t for survival… but for family.
If you’re a fan of Karen Kingsbury, then you’ll love Blue Sky. Get your copy today on paperback or kindle.
-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form. Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.
To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.
– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD. This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.