A soft, gentle rain after days of summer heat. From the living room window, I see relief on mother nature’s face. Everything in her dominion has regained its lost charm. Everything seems to burst with hidden splendor never seen in a while. The weary look on plants and trees is gone. It is replaced with a smile. Alleluia! The world is reborn and all are vibrant with joy.
As a creative force in nature, I have come to love the rain like the breath of morning sunlight or the touch of green grass on my feet during summer. Yet rain would not play hero all the time. Sometimes it turns into a perfect storm causing floods and destruction in its path. How may one account for this? Well, perhaps, it’s rain’s peculiar way of exhorting that life is a struggle. That we have to be tough to make it in this world.
When I was still a boy, my friends and I used to play at the then unfinished church in my hometown in the Philippines. One day the sky suddenly darkened, the lightnings flashed, and the thunder growled. The heavens seemed to declare, “Rain’s coming! Better go home now.” But we were adamant. We still wanted to play. So we built a shelter from cardboards and branches of acacia leaves and stayed there for the rain.
Many years had passed since then. I have long outgrown my short pants, but the details of that particular day remain vivid in my mind. Rainwater in cupped hands. Wet, smiling faces. Naked feet. Wooden swords trying to cut the raindrops. Little boys lying comfortably on branches of acacia leaves. It was evidently our first lesson on self-reliance that would inspire us through manhood.
One autumn years ago, I was on my way to the bus stop when it started to rain. It was so sudden that people in the streets were caught unawares. Everybody rushed for shelter. I was about to follow suit when I realized the futility of doing so. All available spaces were brimming with humanity. No more room for me. So I just walked in the rain and suffered the consequences. I was knocked down by cold the following morning, but learning to cooperate with the inevitable made me a happier person. As Henry Wadsworth Longfellow once wrote:
for after all, the best thing to do,
when it rains, is to let it rain.
It was also the same poet who said that “into each life, seme rain must fall.” And it must. It is rain that add colors to our life. Man to be a man must be constantly challenged. He needs the challenges that rain brings to prove his worth. To justify his existence. Hence, a world without rain brings death to the living. Creativity is life and rain is the life-giver.