It is monsoon time in India. Since we don’t have these rains in the USA it’s hard to imagine what they are like. Imagine living in a climate like Arizona but having spontaneous torrential rains at any time from June to September? The temperatures are very high and the rains don’t do much to cool things off. With millions of people living on the street and in makeshift huts the rain can cause much damage to them and their few possessions. The suffering is great in the heat, but often increases during the rains as things are destroyed and washed away.
Yet there are some benefits, if one looks for them. Dark clouds block the relentless rays of the sun. The air is cooler during the rain. Pollution is cleansed from the air, at least until the rain stops. The constant noise of the cities is drown out by the sound of rain falling on the earth. And, of course, the earth needs the moisture. It’s the only time in the year it rains and the ground soaks it up. Reservoirs need to be filled, as do rivers and lakes. Despite how difficult they are when they are happening, the monsoons are essential to life in India.
As I said, we don’t have monsoons in the USA. But we do have times in our lives when the normal difficult grind all of a sudden gets worse. Unexpected storms hit us hard and bring suffering and misery. As do the monsoons, they leave for a while only to return again and again. Yet they, too, are necessary for our spiritual growth and well being. They humble us, the help us reset our focus on what really matters in life, they cause us to go running back to God for help and comfort, they wash away apathy and refresh our spirits inwardly despite all that is going on around us.
Where would we be if there were never any difficulties or problems in life? It sounds great, but would we be better, stronger people? Remember, God’s purpose for us in this life is not to give us an easy time now but to help us grow for all eternity and for Him to be glorified by how we respond to these storms. If you see a monsoon approaching or if you are in the middle of one now, remember God uses it for a good purpose.
Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.
Hebrews 12:11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
1 Peter 4:12 Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.13 But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.
What is your attitude to things that don’t go as you planned? Do you trust that God has a plan and purpose in the difficulty? Do you seek what it is so you can learn and grow from it? Do you encourage others in this way when storms come into their lives?
INDIA UPDATE: Pastor Barnabas has started a new church with his assistant Pastor Ezra. Both are key people in our team there and we have been helping with their support – thanks to those of you who contribute $25 a month for pastoral support! They have started constructing a church (picture below). They are worshipping in a small house but it has a lot of leaks (monsoon season now!). They even want to put toilets in the church, something very, very rare in those kinds of churches! Pray for this new ministry, for the pastors and for the needs to finish the building.
PRAY FOR finances for our trip to India January 10 to February 9. Pastor Moses estimates it will cost about $16,000 for the conferences, travel, housing, food and other expenses for our time there. God is always faithful to provide, but He does want us to ask Him and thank Him for His provision. Thanks!
Christian Training Organization