The first drops of rain make their way towards me across the roof, leaving their wet footprints along the cement. They give the impression of the approach of something invisible. Then the pattering gives way to one solid gentle cleansing. The palm trees sigh and whisper in its passing like those who find themselves in the midst of a long-awaited coming home.
The heat here is strong, but it’s also the monsoon season. This means that whenever the temperature gets to be too unbearable, often there is a reprieve. The rain comes and—for however many hours it lasts—it brings refreshment, washing the air of dust and mosquitoes, blocking the heat of the sun, and soothing my ears with it’s song.
Every morning I wake up in the heat and I have a choice. I can grumble and complain inside my heart, or I can welcome the day, welcome the one who made it to show me his heart for the next few hours. Just when I find the foreignness, the rough climate, the wear of daily tasks has rubbed raw against my soul, the spirit comes—like the rain—and whispers cleansing, refreshment, peace. They are daily moments, small, not enough to carry me to December or even through the end of the week. But they are enough for the next hour, the next afternoon. They are the rain of spiritual manna.
Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts…
My debts are large, my need for manna great. I would venture to say that the lessons the father is teaching me now are not unique to India. I could learn them at home, except for the fact that, here, he has my attention. I cannot leave. I cannot run to something more comfortable. I cannot surround myself with social engagements or other voices to drown him out. I need him to survive, and he knows it. I know this statement is just as true when I am home, yet somehow I have fooled myself into believing otherwise.