Thursday, July 16, 2009

An abundance of rain

We've been suffering a serious drought for four or five years but I'm happy to say that it seems to be over in our little part of Australia. Just recently we've enjoyed days and days of heavy rainfall which has transformed our familiar area into a water-world I'd never even imagined. This is a creek at the end of our street which is powdery dry for most of the year. For the last 3 or 4 winters it's only produced a bit of a trickle but when I took Blake out for a walk at the end of the day yesterday it looked as if we were in an entirely different place more like Holland or Venice.
And the road was flooded! For years those gates which say, "This road is subject to flooding" have been permanently open and we've laughed. I couldn't believe what I saw! We hurried home to get the other two kids to come down for a look.

The sound of gushing was incredible. Now that's what I call a creek! I could watch it for ages.

I guess it takes something like a bad drought to make people smile and rejoice in the middle of a cold, wet winter. Emma even did a bit of paddling on the road. Many neighbourhood people were around. It was a cause of great awe and celebration.

And it looks as if there's even more to come. It's fantastic! Those clouds couldn't get any heavier.
A book of devotions I've been reading speak of rainfall representing God's generous abundance. It says He doesn't want to just dampen us with a little of his bounty but pour it down until it saturates us, like these clouds. And when it comes down to earth, it doesn't return to heaven without fulfulling its purpose of refreshing and brightening the countryside.
Another book I have is "The Blood and the Glory" by Billye Brim. She was living in Israel during one of their worst droughts on record. She said that scientists were making dire reports about the status of the Sea of Galilee every day on the news. I knew just what she meant because it's been the same over here with news reports about our Murray River. And then there was a sudden miracle rainfall! Newspaper headlines in huge type read "NES NES NES" which means "MIRACLE" The sea of Galilee overflowed its banks, and scientists had predicted that it would take years to fill up in normal rainy seasons. The Jordan swelled and rolled as it must have done in Biblical days.
What caught my imagination about this story is that the Judean desert bloomed. It was such an unseasonal miracle rainfall that the desert was blanketed with bright flowers. She said exotic seed sprouted that nobody even knew was down there. I love that because it can be so much like our lives. We each of us contain seed that may have been dormant for so long they seem unlikely ever to create anything good, but then they bloom all of a sudden.
Just now, I'm experiencing a bit of a downpour in another area of my life. My mind is being saturated with ideas for a new novel. "Risky Way Home" was published late last year, "A Design of Gold" will be published within the next few months and I thought I'd be relaxing and clean out of ideas, but they've just started flowing for something entirely new. I have the whole concept even down to its name, "A Clean Slate" and I'm up to chapter 5 in my writing of it. The ideas are springing into my head like those flowers in the Judean desert. I can't honestly give myself credit for creating when the ideas just appear like this. All I'm doing is being a scribe. So my notebook is filling up each day, my characters are living, I can hear their voices and laughter. I absolutely this part of writing.
I guess writer's block is a bit like a drought. I've had it before and tried to press through it, but I think it's something like a true climate drought. You can't really do much about it in your own strength and I've learned not to try. And what I'm experiencing now is like an abundance of rain. This abundance will surely occupy me for the next several months to a year and I'll enjoy every moment.


  1. Fantastic Paula! Fantastic about the rain and really wonderful news about another book :)

    I think I'm suffering that writers drought you spoke about. I pray for flooding in my life too.

    Thanks for your encouragement.

  2. Praise the Lord for all the rain you are having! Great news!

    And I am SO excited for you, flowing with ideas for a new book. That's terrific! May God continue to bless you in your writing.

    Yes, we do have self-rising flour here but I don't see it needed in recipes much, though in older cookbooks, I see it used more (I love reading old cookbooks.) The biscuit recipe I'm sending you just uses regular flour. I think I'll email it to you - let me know when receive it. Glad to share and hope you and your family enjoy it!

    Have a great week,

  3. A Clean Slate....mhm...I love it!!

    A beautiful post! We've gone through the drought to flood but I hadn't thought of it in such beautiful terms. Thank you!

  4. Sorry I haven't emailed you the recipe yet - I scanned the magazine article and I'm trying to set it up to send it to you. Todd doesn't work tomorrow so hopefully he can help me. Thanks for your patience!