The darkening Kansas skies of spring are not always a welcome sight, for they can bring chaos and destruction in the blink of an eye. But when the grey clouds begin to gather, and the dusty wet smell fills the nostrils, a man can welcome the coming rain. The drama of a Kansas thunderstorm, with blazing lightning and crashing thunder, will soon give way to the steady rain which the farmer’s fields drink in festival. The dust is cleared from the air, the landscape is cleansed.
Most Kansas rains are gentle rains, and steady. They embrace everything, like God’s pity, soaking flower and earth, rose and stone, man and beast, house and the bowing wheatfields. No one and nothing is beyond the reach of this rain and its mercy. It quenches the thirst fired by desire with the true drink that has long been sought. It gives new life, true and green. It cools and it soothes.
The aftermath of a Kansas rain, like the mercy of God, leaves a gentle, quiet joy. It will not heal the branch broken off by the storm, a tear in the fabric of the tree that will mark and scar, but it will bring the new growth that covers the wound and new branches with buds of life soon sprout. That darkened sky is broken soon by the light of the sun, and a sky so crisp and bright that one must shade one’s gaze to see the horizon. The blue of the heavens infuses a man’s soul and buoys his heart and mind.
There is no rhyme nor reason to the Kansas rains, which come in fury, or in a whisper, which spring out of nowhere and which come on slowly and steadily. And there is no formula to the mercy of God, for it is indiscriminate in its scope and efficacious beyond our knowing. Like the Kansas rain, it falls upon the just and unjust. It can destroy the foundationless, and pierce the stone. It can fill a mother’s milk and slake a hardened athlete. It is pervasive, but must be sought. For it one can find substitutes, but substitutes which do not satsify, and indeed, only accentuate the need.
It is a dangerous thing to meditate on the mysteries of God’s grace. For too close attention to one or another matter of God’s mercy leads one into unreason and madness. It is far, far better to leave aside the machinations and reasonings of men, and to simply embrace the God of mercy, who loves and pities each of us, always, wooing us like no other lover ever could, and in that love making us freer, more whole, more divine.
Let it rain.
Other Kansas Meditations:
- Kansas Sacramentals
- The Backdrop of the Kansas Horizon
- Kansas Roads
- Kansas and the Transfiguration of Longing
- Kansas Darkness