1089. The quality of mercy is not strained; it droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven  upon the place beneath. ~William Shakespeare

The great and amorous sky curved over the earth,
and lay upon her as a pure lover.
The rain, the humid flux descending from heaven
for both man and animal, for both thick and strong,
germinated the wheat, swelled the furrows
with fecund mud and brought forth the buds in the orchards.
~Aeschylus, The Danaides, c 500 B.C.

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Rain! Each drop is a small, but powerful, miracle descending from above, and when it falls, it comes down on a mission of salvation through time, space, and distance. When it first hits the ground after a prolonged dry spell like the one we’d been having, the sound of it fills my ears with joyful delight. As I listen to the falling rain it seems to create a kind of music which is not unlike the dulcet chords a beloved’s voice gives rise to. What’s more its haunting melodies often spark the remembrance of a vague “water” memory, perhaps a nebulous recollection of my wet beginning that lingers somewhere in memory’s oldest and deepest recesses. So it is that for as long as I can remember I’ve been drawn to rain’s mystique, and it never fails to put a smile on my face and thanksgiving in my heart. It has been said that nature, like man, sometimes weeps for gladness, and when the smell of wet soil and damp grass greet my nose, I have also been known to “weep for gladness.” Not only that but on the heels of the smiling, gratitude, and weeping, I’m oftimes overcome with the irresistible urge I felt in childhood to jump and dance with wanton joy in the sloshy puddles beneath my feet.

He(God) draws up the drops of water, which distill as rain to the streams. Job 36: 27  ✝

**These are rain dotted flowers already blooming in my gardens.

23. Nature, like man, sometimes weeps for gladness. ~Anonymous

Rain! whose soft architectural hands
have power to cut stones, and
chisel to shapes of grandeur the very mountains.
~Henry Ward Beecher

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Each drop of rain is a powerful miracle, a miracle that falls between heaven and earth as it travels vast distances around earth’s surface.  It speaks so loudly of holiness that whenever it appears here, it never fails to draw me to itself.   Perhaps because somewhere in my memory’s oldest and deepest recesses there’s a vague in-utero recollection of the soothing nature of a watery beginning, a remembrance of a sacred mothering source.  When the first drops of rain hit the ground, especially after a long absence, they fall on my ears not unlike the chords of a beloved’s voice.  And after the rain, when the smell of wet soil and damp grass greet my nose, I “weep for gladness.”  The deliciousness of its return prompts the same urges I experienced in childhood.  What fun it would have been to have played in the rain and danced with wanton delight in the sloshy puddles beneath my feet had mom not forbid it.

All the water earth will ever have was granted us at the beginning of time.  In whatever form it falls to earth, be it rain, fog, frost, snow, or sleet, water is part of a divinely designed cycle to insure Creation’s continuance.  The holy water-bearers bring the stuff without which there is no life for it is the substance in which life is formed and the substance of which life is sustained.  As a part of the grand and holy design, falling waters move in never-ending circles to kiss the earth and return to the clouds.  Given that I can’t help but wonder how far each drop of moisture has traveled throughout the eons of time.  One thing of which I’m always certain though is that rain’s “soft architectural hands” were made by the soft Hands of He who made the earth and us.

I will send you rain in its season, and the ground will yield its crops and the trees their fruit.  Leviticus 26: 4   ✝