I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, ‘Do not fear; I will help you.’ Isaiah 41:13
An inferno of a fire raged on the northeast side of our city, Colorado Springs. The flames continued on their destructive path; thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes and more than 300 homes have been burned to their foundations. While weary firefighters continued their task, the fire raged on. Flames consumed homes of people who devoutly follow Christ as well as those who shake their fists at God. The psalmist readily admits that “tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long, ‘Where is your God?’” These words have been heartbreakingly familiar to many in this city during these horrific days.
During such a tragedy, modern technology allows us to track our friends’ whereabouts and praise God for their safety even though they may have lost all earthly possessions. Through the same technology, photographers record pictures that bring the reality of this catastrophe to my very eyes as I see pictures of ashes where once stood stately homes.
In one series of pictures, as I viewed the loss of towering pines and once-welcoming homes, another photo caught my attention. Amid the black, billowing smoke filling the frame was a rainbow. Not brilliantly multihued, but definitely visible.
A rainbow in the horror of fire? Scientists explain that “rainbows are caused by the splitting of white sunlight into component colors by raindrops.” If rain was falling when that picture was taken, the exhausted firefighters on the mountainside couldn’t feel it and no rain reached the roaring flames. But there was a rainbow.
The God who creates rainbows says, “Do not fear, I will help you.” Family albums may be burned to a crisp and furnishings turned into ash, but our God asks us to look for the rainbows even while tears flow.