When God Stops the Rain

by Reggie Osborne II
Follow @reggieosborne on Twitter, friend me on Facebook or Google+.

California is in the fourth year of drought.  The video below demonstrates just how serious this problem really is.

Of course, the people of California and the rest of the modern world don’t believe God has anything to do with this.  They blame it on climate change.  Apparently their god has nothing to do with the climate.

The God that Christians worship, however, repeatedly claims responsibility for the weather (Gen 6, Ex. 9, Josh 10, 1 Sam 7, 12, 2 Sam 21, 1 Kings 8, 16, Hosea 13, Amos 4, Jonah 1, etc, etc, etc).  It’s beyond me to know why God has let a drought come over California for the past 4 years, and I don’t care to guess.  But I certainly believe He’s in control of it and that the rain (or lack thereof) remains in His jurisdiction.

On a side note, it’s pretty remarkable that this kind of an epic drought isn’t being treated like major news.  Outside of California it’s hardly even discussed.  Sporting events, social issues, and television shows dominate airwaves, but the fact that it’s not raining in one of the world’s most prominent places is barely mentioned.

Since 2012, the state has been literally dying.  Golf courses are still watered and the lawns are kept green, but the video above demonstrates the undeniable consequences of the drought.  Wells are drying up.  Entire communities are having water trucked to them each week.  Lakes have turned into ponds, and the state’s poorest populations are the ones who suffer most.

In the video above, the governor of California is confronted by the fact that the agricultural industry, responsible for growing food and supplying many low-income jobs, has not had their water cut off yet.  That’s right – the people of California are beginning to demand that their farmers let the crops die and food production be significantly scaled back.

And all of this is a sobering reminder of God’s power.  But it’s also more than that.

It’s a demonstration of how far we’ve come as human beings from acknowledging that an all-powerful “god” even exists.  Just a generation ago, national figures would be calling for our country to pray in the face of many modern-day troubles, including this drought.  But those days are gone, replaced by a time when religion (specifically Christianity) is mocked and scorned.  Christians are spoken of with the same ridicule that one might expect to be directed towards morons and clowns.

God has been dismissed.  He is no longer considered a significant factor in anything.

He is not considered or acknowledged in any form of national policy.  We do not think of Him before we go to war, before we sign agreements, before we change laws, or before we spend money.  We are not quite ready to strike His name from our currency and Pledge of Allegiance, but we have certainly struck God, Himself, from any position of influence.

In God’s book of wisdom we come upon the following counsel:  “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths. (Prov. 3:5-6)”

But we prefer the polar opposite of this wisdom.  We prefer to acknowledge Him in absolutely nothing, to direct our own paths, and to imagine that He does not mind being ignored out of existence.

This cannot continue.  It is an impossibility.  God will not be forever ignored.  One way or another, He will be glorified as Creator and Sovereign Lord.  He will not be despised forever.  That is the message repeatedly issued throughout Scripture.

And so when we think of four-year droughts, climate changes, strange weather patterns, and when we think of hostile enemies, lawlessness, and great economic suffering, we should remember that God is not dead, nor does He sleep.

We would do well to remember the northern Kingdom of Israel, which in a short 80 years went from dedicating the Temple to the Lord under the reign of Solomon, to worshiping golden calves and the Baals.

That’s right – it was only 80 years from Solomon to Ahab and Jezebel.  Time flies when you’re embracing heresy.

They went from strict laws forbidding sexual impurity to widespread homosexuality and adultery.  They went from a holy priesthood ordained by God through the tribe of Levi, to a sacrilegious priesthood of people consisting of anyone who wanted to be a priest and had the right connections.  They went from justice and integrity to the murder of Naboth for a pretty vineyard.

Nothing quite sums up the state of the kingdom like 2 Kings, chapter 1, when King Ahaziah – the son of Ahab and Jezebel – became gravely injured to the point of death.  But rather than going to Elijah, he sent his messengers to Ekron, the land of the Philistines, to seek the wisdom of Beelzebub.

He preferred the “Lord of Flies” to the Lord Jehovah.

2 Kings 1:6 – “Thus says the LORD: ‘Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are sending to inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron?”

The tragedy of the United States of America is that we once celebrated the idea that God will hear our prayers and bless those who honor Him.  But now we don’t even bother to pray, let alone attempt to honor a God who seems at odds with our own ideas of morality.  Who is God to tell us what’s right and wrong?

This seems incredibly arrogant, and incredibly stupid of us – to put God in a position where His only recourse would seem to be supernatural judgment.  Maybe that’s why God has stopped the rain in California.  Maybe not.

But the Lord of Glory will only be robbed of it for so long…