Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: rain (10/17/05)
TITLE: Eyes of Childlike Imagination
By Joseph Civitella
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As a young boy, I thought that raindrops were tears from God. Whenever I would commit a sin, or if my friends committed sins, it seemed to me that God would feel sad and cry on us. The harder the rain fell, the sadder God must have felt. I would get a little sad also, because I knew that I misbehaved and now it was raining on all the little boys and girls, even the ones who didn’t do anything wrong.
If I would hear thunder, I knew that God was also mad. The louder the thunder, the madder He must have been. One time, the thunder was so loud that I thought God was right outside my window, yelling at me for being a very bad boy. I got really scared, and I think I must have behaved like an angel for the next three weeks in a row!
I also remember my reaction to lightning. I hadn't made the link yet to thunder, so for me lightning was not part of God's anger. Instead, a bolt of lightning was, of course, God taking pictures of us. So I would pose. If I was coming down the front stairs of my parent’s house, a flash of lightning would stop me dead in my tracks. I’d turn my face to the sky, and give my biggest smile possible. You couldn’t ever not smile in a photo for God!
Can you imagine my horror when God took a picture of me as I threw a small rock at my neighbor’s window? I hid in my bedroom the rest of that day. My mom kept asking me what was wrong, so I knew she hadn’t seen the photo yet. And I didn’t tell. It took God a long time to get sad about that one, though, because it only rained the day after. And there was no thunder, so at least He wasn’t mad at me. But I really didn’t look forward to going to church that Sunday, just in case the priest saw the picture and told my mom.
Whenever the sun was out, I was quite sure that God was glad, because a steady, bright light like that could mean only one thing – God was taking a movie of us. And you only took movies when something happy was happening, right? Oh, I put on my best Superman skits on those warm, sunny days. The fact that all my friends were also supermen, or other heroes, didn’t bother me at all, as long as I got my fair share of the leading part. God made really good movies over those summers.
Then, every year, something mysterious happened. God went to live in a refrigerator. He wouldn’t cry anymore when He was sad. He would snow on us. And sometimes he’d be really sad because the snow would pile up real high. One of my friends thought that it was God’s dandruff falling from his head, but I told him it couldn’t be. My father was bald, you see, therefore I knew that God didn’t have any hair either.
The same friend once told me that God played marbles, and I knew what he meant. God didn’t always play fair, though, because some of those balls hit the ground pretty hard and they’d all break in a million little pieces. And then they would melt. What good is a marble if it breaks like that and melts? One time some of the bigger marbles even hit me on the head, and I rained on my pillow all that night because it really hurt.
Memories of childhood. That’s all they are now. But often today I wonder why I didn’t become a meteorologist. I think I would have been a natural in that profession. Don’t you agree?
Instead, I am becoming a minister of faith. Now, whether it rains on someone’s soul, or snows, or hails, I will help them see their lives through the eyes of childlike imagination, whatever the sin may be that they committed against themselves. Because that’s what faith is all about, isn’t it?
If you choose to believe it, rain can be teardrops from God.
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