Have you ever felt like God did something just for you? He wouldn’t have had to do it, but He did it anyway and you got His I-love-you message. Well, He did it for me all over again a few weeks ago as I stared out of the little window of seat 10E. It had been a beautiful morning above the clouds, the kind of morning that makes it just a bit hard to drop down into the clouds and watch the air strip appear below. Hard because I know I’ll hit ground running, literally (almost). Hard because all of the pressures and complexities of life are realities again. Hard because this world is a dark place.
From my little place on this planet, I’ve always been fascinated by the sky. Weather and rain and atmosphere, clouds and stars alike. And rainbows. There’s something about a rainbow that’s just downright wonderful and personal. God, the great Promise-Keeper, arranges light and water and strings a bow across the sky. And when we see it, the color breaks through clouds inside of us.
A rainbow is spectacular science, yes. The kind I always hunted for at the library and soaked up all too fast. But a rainbow is more than science. A rainbow is a reminder of God’s covenant with us (Genesis 9:13); it’s the circle around His throne (Revelation 4:3). And to me, a rainbow is His mercy and love set ablaze at just the moment I need to see it in full color.
There skimming the tops of clouds I saw it, that love of His. Scientists call the phenomenon “glory.”
A rainbow encircling this airplane, me? I smile, hugged by Glory. And I realize, as long as we are bound to this planet, the only time we can see the rainbow full circle is when we’re in the clouds.
But it’s worth it. The clouds—the trials—are the vantage point where God makes the riches of His glory known to the objects of His mercy (Romans 9:23).
This backdrop of clouds, this ring of reflected light, they grip my attention. I am surrounded by promises, held by their Maker. And even when I do touch down on the runway and return to the realities of a dark and hurting world, I know this:
“You, O Lord, are a shield around me; You are my glory, the One who holds my head high.” Psalm 3:3