These colorful parts of nature seem to be God’s gentle reminder that He is good and He is faithful, no matter what the weather of our lives’ is like. “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” -Lamentations 3:22-23  

“What’s the weather like?” Isn’t this a common question we think, ask, or hear on a very regular basis? The weather seems to guide many things throughout our day—what outfit to wear, whether or not a coat is needed, and what activities will happen.

At preschool, one of our class jobs is the Weather Checker. During circle time, whoever is privileged with this task typically jumps up, dashes to the window, and within seconds, says one of the following: sunny, cloudy, rainy, or snowy. The class then gets out their suns, clouds, raindrops, or snowflakes, and we begin to sing the weather song. 

Very often, a debate arises while checking the weather. Is it sunny or is it cloudy? Many days, the weather checker can see both the sun and the clouds. Which is it? Some declare it a cloudy day while squinting into the sunshine. Some declare it a sunny day while smiling at the dark, ominous clouds. While it can be a rather humorous debate at times, I’ve seen that the answer always lies in the child’s perspective and what’s in his or her heart that morning.  

A child with a positive attitude can see the sun even on the cloudy days. Sometimes, even if there are more clouds than sunshine, the child will still declare it a sunny day. On the flip side, a child with a less than positive attitude typically focuses on the clouds, even on a bright, sunny day. More often, the weather will be labeled, “cloudy” because even a single cloud can take over.

Aren’t we similar to children? In our lives, sunny weather can include many things; joy, healthy relationships, new life, peace, trust, and love are just a few. Cloudy or stormy weather can be comprised of many as well—strained relationships, hurt, loss, tragedy, or betrayal. Isn’t there usually a mix of some form of these for each of us? Sometimes it seems like the clouds can prevail—we live in a fallen world, so things naturally deteriorate over time. I also know that the harder you press into Jesus, the greater the attacks from the enemy seem to be at times.

Even on warm, sunny days, there are some mornings I wake up and still see only clouds. There are also cold and stormy seasons when I wake up, knowing it’s a rainy day, but the warmth of even a glimmer of sunlight prevails. What’s the difference? It’s very similar to the kids in my preschool class. Not just perspective and attitude (although they carry great weight), but primarily what’s in my heart. Is my heart in line with Jesus? Do I view situations and people as He views them? I’d like to say yes each day, but reality is that I’m human. If I truly view situations and others as He does, everything changes, and it doesn’t matter how tough a situation may feel. Instead of focusing on my own circumstances, my heart is at peace knowing that I belong to Him and that He is in control. It doesn’t mean that those hurts and difficult things vanish, but with full surrender to God, our hearts are opened to clarity, peace, and a deep sense of gratitude. I believe that God can use any situation for His glory, and the enemy is really good at tempting us to focus on the negative.

On days I gravitate more toward the gray skies, I see similar patterns for my day—anxiety, worry, negativity, impatience, and unkind tendencies. I may dwell on the ways I’ve been offended or hurt by others, and unforgiveness tends to creep toward the surface. It’s no fun. On days I stay in the sunshine, I can clearly view people and situations more closely to how God views them—with love, patience, and with the best intentions. A calm heart, an undistracted mind, and grace direct my heart and mind in a Godly way.

Over this last year especially, God has captured my attention with numerous sunrises, rainbows, and sunsets. Sometimes I see them in the calm, cool mornings. Other times they are before or after storms. These colorful parts of nature seem to be God’s gentle reminder that He is good and He is faithful, no matter what the actual weather or our lives’ weather is like. “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” -Lamentations 3:22-23  

Like children, we tend to call out the weather based on what what we see or how we feel; at times our forecasts may be accurate, but more often we may be off if we aren’t first in line with the weather Creator. Our pattern of sunny days, gray clouds, or violent storms may often be unpredictable, but when we seek Him and rest in Him, He allows us to see those beautiful colors every day. He allows us to see every situation and person in our lives as He does. He allows our hearts and minds to be open to what He wants to teach us that day.

My favorite “weather” story in the Bible as a child was the one about Jesus calming the storm. It’s my reminder of His power. For whatever reason, we seem surprised when tough things hit, but Jesus tells us, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
‭‭John‬ ‭16‬:‭33‬ . When we ask things like, “Lord what’s going on? Don’t you care?” He looks at us with open arms and lovingly asks why we don’t trust Him.  This story is also my reminder that some of the toughest, but best lessons are not learned in the seasons of sunshine, calm, and warmth, but in the midst or after the darkest, most violent of storms. 

“That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

Mark 4:35-41

Reading this story with my preschool class or with my own children is a reminder of God’s power every time. I love His creativity of designing weather patterns and his remarkable ability to speak a word and bring peace to all situations.