No not taste the rainbow. This is not a post about skittles. Though there is nothing wrong with skittles.
I was wide awake at around 6am yesterday morning. For those who know me, this sounds completely mental. Clearly my clock is off. You know that clock. I started thinking about my husband as I often do when opening my eyes in the morning and seeing him lying there in various states of sleep and cuteness. I thought about how we ended up here, remembering the many times we were in the car together, the many hours somewhere between here and Norfolk and all over, and how the bits and pieces of our lives were told, retold, analyzed, diagrammed, etc., and how clearly we see in hindsight the paths we took leading us to each other.
So while I was up, I started down a rabbit trail known as Facebook stalking. Well is it stalking if it’s your husband’s profile page? No. No it’s not. So I just was doing some catching up. I started from the beginning, a very good place to start.
I read through post after post of his years long before me. Some things postdated from his childhood. High school photos. VCU days and early IV and teaching days. Then it was on to seminary, graduating, getting ordained, moving to Seattle, becoming a Sounders fan, finding his stride as a pastor and church planter.
Rainbows are refracted light right? They are made up of droplets that get reflected and stuff. I don’t know. I’m no scientist. My point though is basically they are broken up pieces all coming together to make this beautiful thing in the sky. But what they are really are these little fractured drops of water temporarily displaced and really kind of a freak occurrence, this random – well, seemingly – occurrence that we all look at and recognize as distinct and noteworthy. And the more spectacular and broad the rainbow is, the more people see it, stop their cars, take pics with their phones, and marvel.
It’s quite like life. I thought about how it’s my husband’s life, how he’s had these remarkable rainbows throughout his life, what started as terrible storms and destruction, turning the sky from fractured water droplets into beauty. I don’t know the science of it. I know the awe and beauty.
George Matheson was in seminary, engaged to be married, and with a promising career being one of the more gifted students by many accounts. And then he was told by doctors that he was going to be blind. On learning this, his fiancée left him, not being up for the challenge of her future with a blind husband. He decided to leave seminary because he felt unable to complete his studies. His sister came to take care of him and helped him prepare sermons for a church that hired him (awesome) but years later, she would meet and marry her husband and have to move on. On the night of their wedding, to which Matheson did not travel, he wrote the words to “O Love that will not let me go” one verse of which says this:
O Joy that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to thee;
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain,
That morn shall tearless be.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not canonizing my husband, or George Matheson for that matter. But I take great courage in seeing people devastated by the storms of life, still clinging to Jesus, still seeing the beauty in the rainbow, still watching the sky for hope. I’ve had my share of tragedy. I’ve seen pain and sorrow. I’ve been deeply hurt and in harm’s way, sometimes through no fault of my own and other times through every fault of my own. And i didn’t always look for the rainbow. I didn’t always look to the sky. But I do now, and I was looking to the sky when Rob dropped out of it. (aww you can barf now)
Do you look back and see the rainbows? Or do you only remember the storms? Or maybe you’re in the storm now and desperately need it to end. Maybe the storm is getting the better of you. I tell you it will pass. I tell you the rainbow is promised and it will come and you can trace it from beginning to end. Right into the arms of the Love that will never let you go. And then when you look back, look for the rainbows and where they lead. It’s better than a pot of gold. It’s better than an awesome marriage – though that’s cool too. It’s better than having a baby – though clearly that’s rad. The rainbow leads you to the One who gives good gifts, all these and more, but more than that, He gives Himself – oh the beauty and wonder, to the praise of His glorious grace!!
And now I kinda do feel like Skittles.