Today is the first day of exercising the race horses. A few drops of rain tickle our heads, but are shaken off as only a tease. My host points to the grey horizon. It’s visibly raining 10 miles away. He explains how all day yesterday it was the same thing, raining over there, but not here on his own pasturelands. For a people who make their home on the range, rain is regarded as wealth because it makes the grass long and rich, making their animals give more milk, bringing more money at the market. Summer rain is liquid gold.
So the owner of this mobile ranch motions to the clouds that won’t seem to come and says, won’t you pray to Jesus for that rain to come over here? I indicate affirmative and gaze into the grey through the windshield of the car. We drive along behind the horses as they walk along a dirt road they use for a race track. Then we wait until they start to run. My horseman host starts yelling with a shrill of a
A few minutes after we get back, it rains and rains until the water is streaming down the gulley. At least two inches of rain fall in about 15 minutes. The horsemen and his helpers whipped off their shirts to get a rain shower, the only kind available out here on the range. We drive back to the corral area. We roar through a two feet deep lake/river that flooded over the grass. In a half hour the fairway has turned water hazard.
Invited into the little white round felt home of the ranch for tea, I notice there’s rain water on the floor and on the only stool. I sit on it anyway. The tea helps warm us up enough to press on with the next task.
The calves hanging around the corral have vanished in the storm. Everyone is scrambling and searching, yelling across roaring waters asking who has looked where. We get in the car and head down to the river and see the group of calves galloping away on the far side of the river which has tripled in size. We crawl though it and try to punch in front of the leader of the group. We stop to pick up two of the horseman’s daughters who have run all the way their trying to retrieve their livelihood. Finally, we get in front of the calves and turn them back, herd them across the river toward home, only to find their mothers have entered the scene. So we have to turn and herd the cows back up toward their day pasture from where they had just run to seemingly rescue their calves.
It wasn’t until after I dropped off the rancher/horseman at his home that I realized his request for rain from Jesus has been answered. He got his request whether he knew it or not. But my joy was a little less for having failed to pass along his prayer personally to Jesus. The blessing fell from the sky, whether I prayed for it or not. But my role in the result was diminished missed my chance to pray.
To sum up, the storm was a rush to experience. But I missed the rush that comes from praying in faith and having God powerfully and immediately answer. Quicker to pray next time.