Normally, there is a well-established rhythm to life on our island. Knowing and understanding what that rhythm is allows us residents to have a general plan for our year, as we know from past experiences when the island will be busy, when it will be slow, and when there will be moderate levels of activity. Business owners and employees plan and prepare, and these preparations extend beyond simply having sufficient materials, supplies and labor to handle the peaks. There are also physical and emotional preparations, usually associated with vacations and down times that allow the workforce to fully charge their batteries to give them the energy needed to handle the workload.
Unfortunately for all of us, this has not been a normal year. Covid-19 disrupted rhythms everywhere, and knocked all of us off balance. Closing everything down back in the Spring, combined with the doomsday predictions of what would happen when or if there was a re-opening of the economy left businesses with no idea what they should prepare for. When businesses did open back up, people flocked to our island in numbers that we haven’t seen before – and they just kept coming. A local newspaper published an article in late October with the headline referring to “an Endless Summer”. Our community was caught off-guard, and the result has been quite taxing. People are exhausted physically, and the emotional toll has been exacerbated by the pandemic and the election rhetoric. We need a break if we are going to be able to handle the final peaks of the year that come with the holidays.
Fortunately, God sees all of this and understands our needs better than we do. Into our lives this week He has sent rain – rain that keeps the tourists away, makes it impossible to frame a house, and keeps us from doing much of anything outdoors. Yes, we need rain to water the lush greenery on our island. But we needed rain this week so that we would slow down and catch our breath. If the weather had remained beautiful, the work would have continued and the tourists would have flocked here, and we all would have been another week closer to absolute exhaustion. Frankly, we can be our own worst enemies sometimes and keep working even when our bodies are screaming for a break, so we need someone bigger to step in and protect us from ourselves. God did just that, and he brought the rain.
This rainy day really is a gift, one that was given to us so that we could take a step back, catch our collective breath, and maybe even take a nap. God created us so that we needed rest (remember that whole “sabbath” thing?). In a year like this, where we are out of rhythm, it is even more important for us to adjust on the fly and recharge when we can. So enjoy a slow day, and see it for the blessing that it really is. Don’t forget to thank God for it. While you are at it, why don’t you spend some time with Him? That would be the ultimate blessing from a rainy day.
Peace and blessings – Pastor Aaron