May 2019








Okay, old joke time. “If April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring?” The answer: “Pilgrims!”

Perhaps everybody knows this rhyme; my mom drilled it into my head from an early age; but I was interested to read where the rhyme originated from. In 1557, a man by the name of Thomas Tusser compiled a collection of writings he called, “A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry.” (I looked it up, and was relieved to find it’s not a check-list for husbands at all!) For April, he wrote: “Sweet April showers Do spring May flowers.”

But, there’s a meaning behind those words. An old Al Jolson song said it this way: “Though April showers may come your way, they bring the flowers that bloom in May; And if it’s raining, have no regrets; Because it isn’t raining rain, you know, It’s raining violets.”

That’s a good outlook, but it’s more than that, for God allows steady rain to shower down upon us, knowing that it will help us grow.

One of my favorite stories in the Old Testament concerns Joseph, son of Jacob. The showers of affliction and discipline fell on him hard, time and time again, yet God had a wonderful plan for each struggle. In time, Joseph recognized the hand of God in all of his circumstances. “As for you, you meant evil against me,” Joseph told his brothers, “but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive…” (Genesis 50:20 ESV).

Sure, the “showers” may become a torrent, even a deluge! God may discipline and teach us in those showers, and it may hurt. We may not like those showers at all; they can be messy and, in the moment, frustrating. But, as Hebrews 12:6 tells us, “The Lord disciplines those whom he loves, and chastises every child whom he accepts.” And, His showers are not without purpose.

We have a choice in how we will respond when the rain beats down upon us. We can complain about the showers, or we can trust that our sovereign God has training and growth in mind, and anticipate the beauty of the flowers to come.






“The Historic Church on the Move!”