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Cute Shoes, Rain, and Big Birthdays

Penny Harrison - rainboots

I didn’t bother to look at my weather app yesterday. I instead went “old school” and actually looked out the window. It was raining, and I couldn’t have been more excited.

You see, a few weeks ago I bought new rain boots…really, really cute rain boots.  I’ve been waiting patiently to wear them because no matter how fashionably bold you are, no one will believe you put any thought into an outfit if you wear rain boots when it’s sunny and 90 degrees.  So…yay!…rain!

I was so excited I took a picture of my boots and sent it to a friend with the caption, “Don’t mind the rain- I have cute rain boots.”  That phrase, sent tongue in cheek, has resonated in my mind for the last 24 hours.  Maybe it’s because the sun did come out later and I felt a little silly in my oh-so-cute boots.  Maybe it’s because I don’t have an active Instagram and felt like this was the one time I wished I did.  Maybe it’s because I didn’t wear the right socks and my feet were very sweaty later in the day.  Or maybe it’s because I realized having the appropriate (and cute!) shoes on a rainy day is about much more than just that.

For the last two years I’ve dreaded two things…turning 50 and sending my youngest son to college.  For two years I wondered what my life would be like with an empty nest, specifically with no spouse in the nest with me.  For two years I contemplated what it would feel like to be 50 and alone.

I’m here two years later…50…empty nest…but, not alone.

On the day I left my youngest at school, friends, family, and even my boss called or texted to check on me.  On the day I turned 50 (only 1 week and 2 days after leaving that son at college), my friends gathered to surprise me with a huge party.  My rainy days had come, and I had more than just cute boots to cover my feet.  I had sweet friendships to nurture my heart.

I dreaded the storm of those big transitions, but there was only calm and peace.  Isn’t this what God does over and over for us?  We see the rain and He sees an opportunity to give us the rainbow.  We see the potential for heartache and He seizes the chance to remind us He is holding us tight.

The reality is…
To get the rainbow, we have to first endure the storm.  To have our heart seized by God, we have to allow it the chance to be broken along the way.  He tells us to “consider it pure joy” to live through these things.  That seems like a tall order some days, but then again…we have more than cute rain boots to walk in.  We walk in faith, believing the One who holds all things together.

Cute rain boots are important to a shoe-loving girl like me.  If getting to wear those boots means I have to withstand the rain…I’m okay with that.

James 1:2-4 – “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

Penny Harrison

About the Author

Penny Harrison is a mom, friend, writer, Children’s Pastor, and lover of a good cup of coffee. (Not always in that order). She is passionately in love with God and His Word. Penny’s calling is to help others come to know Jesus for themselves, to discover how God’s Word applies to their lives, and to see how God reveals Himself to us in the everyday things we experience. Penny lives in Atlanta and currently serves as Children's Pastor at Stonebridge Church in Marietta, GA. You can hear more from Penny at her blog http://pennyharrison.blogspot.com/