As I listen to the rain that is falling in the holler, I am reminded that God’s love is as gentle and refreshing as the rain.
It’s calming and will make you want to stand outside with your arms up feeling the drops fall on your face. You might even laugh. You might cry. It’s welcoming.
When the wind picked up, you could hear the howling through the windows, the raindrops were more forceful, and the tree branches looked like they could snap at any moment, and the lights flickered on and off.
You might be scared. Maybe you’ll cry for different reasons. Perhaps you will be outside attempting to pick up the shambles.
True repentance and reverence for the LORD comes with a gentle rainfall of God’s love and a nudging from the Holy Spirit. A person is more likely to accept they are a sinner in need of a Savior if it’s gentle and pure of love.
The more we run, the harder the rain falls. The more reckless the love of God becomes and His nudges are harder. The stronger the storm and the aftermath will be more devastating.
When the storm comes, you will seek shelter. Maybe you will want to continue running through the destruction and in the direction of the heavy winds and strong winds.
I was born and raised in a Baptist Church and God always existed in my life, there wasn’t any question. Like most, I sinned and lived a life rebelling against what I was taught. I was so overcome with my family issues, the death of my dad, and all the questions like if God loved me, then why did He let this happen to me? Why would He let me have this kind of life? Caught up in pain, confusion, doubt, and trying to figure out the meaning of life, if God was really God, then this wouldn’t even be a question I’d have to ask. Right? Oh, how wrong I was. I became a wanderer in this old world but a storm came. It was a journey I had to experience on my own.
The slow, gentle, peaceful but reckless love of God that fell like rain turned me back around.
We must portray this same love to our fellow human beings. That’s our job as Christians. We are called to love and by loving others we display the love Jesus wants us to. His true love.
It’s up to Him to decide how strong the storm is and how much devastation there will be. It’s not ours and we cannot step out of our place, and cause our own storm in someone else’s life.
Our second job is to live a life that glorifies Christ so others will see His light shining through us. God used many people on my journey to light the way toward my repentance and to remove me from being a complacent Christian.
In my personal experience, I can tell you that telling them about their sin, shoving repentance down their throat and smacking them over the head with our Bible is not going to work. It’s the opposite of Christ’s love. It’s important to share God’s word in a loving way that glorifies Him and doesn’t hinder the process of the other person. We are to be the calm and gentle rain and Allow the Holy Spirit do the rest.
This blog is my heart laid out to each and every one of you. It’s my journey back to God and Christianity especially for those who feel undeserving of having a relationship with Jesus, for those who have been turned off by Christianity, or need a safe place to be a wanderer for just a little while longer.*
I promise to be as loving and gentle as I can. I will put the sinner before the sin because the sinner is a human loved by God. I agree that repentance is crucial but there is a better way of reaching it through love and at Barefoot In A Holler, this is how we are doing it.
The last time I visited home, I went to my uncle’s church and He said, “My prodigal daughter has returned.”
I have returned. It was a long journey but I went back to my roots. I went back to the truth. Wherever you are, Jesus is calling.
*No one is promised tomorrow and Hell is real, and we have to have Jesus in our hearts and believe that He is the only begotten Son Of God. Please look up John 3:16.
All of my love to y’all,