For God is not unfair. He will not forget how hard you have worked for him and how you have shown your love to him by caring for other Christians, as you still do. (Hebrews 6:10 NLT)

Once again, we have to re-adjust our plans to rain. Half a year ago, our family moved to west Texas. It has rained much of the time since our move. While some of you live in places where you are used to a lot of rain, this part of the country is not. Now I sure don't want to ever complain about too much rain. But in a place where we seldom get enough rain, we have a hard time imagining what too much rain looks like. On the flip side, we're just not used to making contingency plans because of rain all the time.

So I got to thinking ... not so much about physical rain, but about those folks who have to continually deal with "spiritual rain" and "emotional rain" all the time. Now I'm sure some of you may be thinking to yourself, "Yes, but Phil, into every life a little rain must fall." You are correct. But, I'm not talking about folks that have to face an occasional difficulty or an infrequent disaster. I'm talking about folks whose lives are full of contingency plans and unexpected challenges because the rain is always falling in their world.

How do they do it day in and day out when there is so much for them to deal with every single day?
How do they live with the uncertainty?
How do they deal with the weariness?
How do they face each new day knowing that from the moment they get up until the time they sleep, they're going to be scrambling just to get through another hard day because the "rain" is always falling?

To be honest with you, I don't have any earthshaking ideas or insights. I know all the stock answers, and most of them are dead on true ... also insufficient:

The church family needs to step up and help them.
They need to be in a support group that can help support them through their tough times.
They need to turn it over to the Lord and trust that he will deliver them.
They need to get respite time so they can rest and renew themselves.
They need to be honest with others about their burdens.

The list could go on, but we all get the point. Bottom line, however, they still have to get up and face the rain every morning ... noon ... evening ... and dark of night.

Our goal is not to try to find heaven here.
So I want to remind us all about something that seems to have been forgotten in our affluent, have-it-all-now, modern Christian mind set: this world isn't our home. This is a fallen and broken place. People here have unfair burdens to carry. Our goal is not to try to find heaven here, but to learn and display the character of heaven no matter what we face in our world. Things are not going to be fair, much less always easy, on this side of glory. Sometimes we have to simply hold on to the truth that heaven is in our future and God will not forget our works of service when we spend much of our lives in the "rain." We have to hold on and trust that the problems we face here will melt away when the Lord dries every tear from our eyes and welcomes us to the home he has prepared for us. Sometimes I fear that not only have we quit singing songs about heaven, but we have forgotten that heaven awaits and its glory is beyond our abilities to comprehend, much less describe.

So let's not give up doing all those things in the list above to help and to be helped during those times in life when we live in the "rain." But at the same time, let's not give up on our bright future when all burdens are lifted and all the loads we've carried are remembered by the One to whom they matter most.

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. (Romans 8:18 NRSV)