A rainbow is a meteorological phenomenon that is caused by reflection, refraction and dispersion of light in water droplets resulting in a spectrum of light appearing in the sky. It takes the form of a multicoloured circular arc. So Wikipedia expounds on the subject.
True, yet so lacking! What about the wonders of iridescence, of beauty, of surprise, of mystery? Who has not had their spirits lifted by the sight of a rainbow?
With angels still bowling off in the distance, and God’s earth-drenching at play, a shaft of sunlight breaks through the clouds in great ‘alleluia’ streams. “The sun’s out”, the cry comes, “and it’s still raining…there will be a rainbow! Can you see it?”
One of God’s special effects, intended, it would appear, simply to delight God’s beloved children, to be a sign of God’s Presence, and, interpreted through the Hebrew scriptures, of God’s promises.
God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” Genesis 9: 12-16
What is a promise? It is a statement made to another person, to God, or to yourself that you will do something, or will not do something. A promise is guaranteed, assured and true. Right? But human promises are shattered regularly. From simple misbehaving, to breaking vows, we are indeed all sinners who fall short of the glory of God and our lives are littered with the dry husks of betrayed confidences and fractured promises. Some can be redeemed. Some may not. But perhaps God’s promises enable us to become “participants of the divine nature. ” (2 Peter 1:4) For God can be trusted to be faithful, even when it feels like no one else can.
God has not promised Skies always blue,
Flower strewn pathways All our lives through.
God has not promised Sun without rain,
Joy without sorrow Peace without pain.
But God has promised Strength for the day,
Rest for the labor Light for the way,
Grace for the trials Help from above,