Jun 02

Flashback Friday: Rainbows in June

[this post originally appeared on this site in June of 2014, but it’s a message worth sharing again! Blessings, Chaplain Chris Haughee]

Those who have lived in Helena, Montana for a while quickly learn that June is our wettest month. Just about the time we’re ready to go stir crazy from another long winter, we get a wet and late-coming Spring. June is likely to bring a thunderstorm to your picnic in the park, and thus venturing out in this fickle month is an act of faith.

But, as has been said, without the rain you cannot have the beauty of the rainbow. 99% of the time people say this phrase while speaking metaphorically. What is meant is that without some disappointment or difficulty in our lives we wouldn’t appreciate the beautiful moments fully. What is a pithy turn of phrase that might help us get through a minimally aggravating day can seem to mock us when real tragedy hits. If you have just lost a loved one or are experiencing a recent diagnosis of cancer, the phrase “without the rain there would be no rainbow” is as likely to push you away from life’s beauty as it is to draw you in.

The children at Intermountain know their fair share of difficult times, as do the staff that attend to them. In this setting, one learns quickly to avoid the saccharine sweetness common to greeting cards and popular media. Pain hurts. Separation wounds. What’s broken sometimes cannot be repaired… at least not to what it was before. The storms of life sometimes crowd out the sun to the point where a rainbow is just a dream. All can truly seem lost is moments of despair.

But then… the sun does break through. The still, small, and gentle voice of God is heard between the peals of thunder. In these moments, a rainbow brings with it the good news that God’s promise remains: We will never be left completely alone. If all should fail us, God will remain. This gives us reason to hope, reason to trust, and reason to love again. This is good news worth sharing!

Recently, our children had the opportunity to share the reasons they were thankful in the midst of their storms. They wrote their prayers of thanksgiving on multi-colored foam feet that were displayed as a rainbow on the wall of our multi-purpose room where we meet for chapel services. They thanked God for Jesus, for family, for friends, for staff, for teachers, for love, and for hope. Their words inspired all of us that walked by the rainbow this Spring to think of reasons we have to be thankful. I was challenged to consider the good news that the rainbow does bring—behind the clouds of our despair, the sun still shines, and someday soon it will break through and once again give us its light.

Good News Rainbow