Our rainbows fall to the east most often when the sun slides towards the neighbors’ farm and the rain has scooted on west.
At the end of a long week that included my fifty-sixth birthday, a rainbow followed us home. It was one of days where the weather has turned to popcorn storms, the clouds puff up, and shoot rain down in lovely shafts. The sun is on the other side. On the radar the weather looks like leopard spots.
We saw the rainbow off to the north, dropping down behind red barns. A guy pulled off the road to snap pictures. As we crested the rise, the rainbow was beside us, bright and focused, a perfect bow. And I saw where it landed. Not pot of gold there, but iridescent light down to the picked field. I wondered what it would be like to stand there in that rain. Would I be surrounded by color? Would I be surrounded by the sparkled light of rain catching the sun, trees catching the rain?
I think of the Bible verse a friend sent me on Facebook for my birthday. “I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you, to give you a future and a hope.” I think of the Noah story, how God said there would be no more floods to destroy the earth, the rainbow was the sign. I think of the year of Jubilee, a seventh year that was set as a rest for the land, a year when slaves had to be set free, when accounts were cleared and people could start fresh.
That’s how it feels to move back to the ground, ten acres, not a whole lot compared to where Bruce and I grew up, miniscule compared to the land our neighbors work. It feels like the new thing God says He’s about to do on the earth, only that new thing is happening here, now, for Bruce and I. Martha Beck says that merely changing how your home is arranged can change everything. And here, here Bruce and I have changed our neighborhood, our home, the whole shebang.
But I also think of the seven year tribulation that some think might come to the earth, just before that new creation sweeps through. Seven years a time of trouble. And that too, Bruce and I have known, as we renovated the farm house, shaped and reshaped it to make it ours.
Nobody talks about how to live into that new creation, how to know the ground you’re standing on, if it’s all brand new. Perhaps its our feet that need to teach us by walking forward, one step, two steps, three.