Look Closer

9-15-01

I was running this afternoon. I’d been feeling down and extremely self-conscious, so much that for the first time this week, the miniscule problems of my life consumed me more than the tragedies we’re facing. But I’d promised myself I would run today, so I was.

It began to rain. Just a sprinkle, enough to make the tree leaves sing from above. I thought, “I hope it quits soon. I have a long way to go.”

The rain continued. Harder. It fell through the leaves and landed on my head and on the path. Soon the path would become muddy. I thought, “I’m going to have to stop again. Why does it have to be so dang hard to work out consistently?”

The rain worsened. As I neared a stopping point, I realized I would have to walk home in this. And I smiled.

Once I stopped, I took off my shoes and socks and stood there on the sidewalk in nothing but a pair of running shorts, feeling the cool rain massage my bare skin. I looked up and let it fall on my face. It felt like God was weeping tears of love and joy over me, cleansing me and renewing my soul. I was taken back to one of my favorite memories –in high school my friends and I had played in the rain like children one afternoon. The runoff flowed around my bare feet as I walked up the edge of the road.

As I walked home, I remembered something. There is still beauty in the world. No matter what’s going on or how bad things may seem–in my own life or far away, there is always something good and beautiful. Sometimes we just have to look for it.

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