The Bare Soul -
June 3, 2007
Barefoot Running in the Rain
Those who run with shoes will never know the joys of running barefoot in the rain! Barefoot running, for me, is my play time. It becomes a smorgasbord of play when it rains -- oh the glorious puddles and all the splashing! It feels like being a child and running and playing without a care in the world! I look forward to these days. They are runs when I feel refreshed and generally invigorated after getting soaked to the skin. Rain is a wonderful gift of God that He uses to not only refresh the earth, but to also refresh our spirits. Many that don't understand the concept of "embracing the rain" get depressed when it rains, or they scurry from one building to the next in order to stay dry. At times, I am the same way when I don't really want to get drenched and I am not out running. However, there are those times when out for a run when I embrace the rain and want to drink in every drop that I can. One of those times is definitely when I am running barefoot.
Throughout God's Holy Word, He uses rain as a metaphor for the power and cleansing of his spirit with humankind. The Latter Rain, in the book of Joel which speaks of God pouring out His spirit on all flesh in the end times gives full implication of its restorative power in that "... young men shall see visions, and old men will dream dreams". These are life-giving demonstrations of what the "rain" can do -- it provides young men and women the power to change themselves and others through God's vision for their lives. While the old men dreaming dreams is not as active as seeing visions, their part is to confirm with the wisdom given in these dreams what God is doing to restore the kingdom to its coming glory.
There is a section that I run regularly that is black asphalt. When it is dry, the pebbles and rocks are hidden by the dark color of the asphalt. Occasionally, I will step on one in just the right way that will give me that quick twinge of realization that barefoot running is not all the time, painless. However, when it has rained the wetness creates a reflection of the pebbles and stones on the surface wetness which makes them very easy to see. When running this section recently in the rain, I thought of Paul's words to the church at Ephesus. He stated that "... Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word ..." (Ephesians 5:25-27). I have often thought of the Word of God as a mirror or a reflection of who God truly is. That the Word, when it is clear in our souls, is like a lamp for our feet! The washing of the asphalt path in the wetness of the rain is a similar to how the word of God enlightens or magnifies our respective paths and how much easier it is to recognize those metaphoric "pebbles" or sins, if you will that would seek to plague our walk (or run) with Him.
Barefoot running in the rain allows me to return to a place of childhood innocence that we all experienced as youth. It allows me to play and feel refreshed as I purposely find every puddle possible to splash in on my run. God through His son the Lord Jesus Christ has invited us all out to play. The Latter Rain of his Spirit is raining down upon the earth all around us. All we have to do is to step into it and not shrink from the invitation. Those involved and immersed in God's rain may look foolish to outsiders, but those experiencing its refreshment know the joy of its cleansing. Let's all purpose to play in God's rain when He beckons.
Having a Blessed Barefoot Blast!
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