So my friend, Laura had this thing about rainbows. She loved them. She dressed colorfully and sparkly and brightly. She refused to let the cancer get her down. She fought it with heart, soul, chemo, radiation, love, laughter, Zumba and rainbows.
Bear with me for a short biblical review of rainbows: from Genesis, we know that a rainbow is a sign of God’s covenant with all living creatures of the earth. It’s His promise to never flood the entire earth again. Here, a rainbow is a sign of God’s grace. We are also told in Revelation that a rainbow is present in heaven – surrounding God on His throne. So, rainbows represent both God’s grace and God’s glory.
So rainbows are nice and all. But my friend is still gone. I was feeling especially anguished recently, between the days of Laura’s death and funeral. My eyes hurt from the crying. At one point, I actually said out loud to God “I’m in this. I’m with you. I trust you. But I need to know, like really know that you’re with me.” I’m much more of a thinker than a feeler. I take God’s word for it (The Bible) and go from those truths. Like, Scripture says He’s with me, so He’s with me. But this week was so hard. This week, I needed to feel it to keep walking.
So, as one who does not often ask for “signs” because I don’t think it’s good, solid faith to need some kind of sign at every turn. It feels too much like telling God how to guide me and I’m not into that. But as one who does not often ask for a particular type of comfort, I kinda figured He would get right on that. I looked. I listened. Nothing.
I woke up with a heavy heart knowing it was the day we would lay Laura to rest. I trudged into my bathroom. And there it was. A freaking rainbow. Faint but clear. I was enthralled by it. I, as any young Gen Xer/old Millennial does, immediately took a photo and shared it on Facebook. At which point I saw the exact same thing had happened to a mutual friend of mine and Laura’s. It was cool, exciting and special. Then I got the text from another friend with the photo of HER rainbow on her wall. They were all different but rainbows nonetheless. Now I was just speechless.
Then we got to the funeral. And at the cemetery, after we released an array of colorful balloons, my friend pointed saying “look!” You won’t believe it. But a splash of a rainbow in the sky. On a sunny day that turned clouded but with not a speck of rain. Above the place where a hundred or so loved ones gathered to put this rainbow warrior to rest.
I don’t know how it works. If it was Laura painting the sky for us with God’s delighted permission, the angels honoring heaven’s new arrival or God Himself showing a grieved group of people His everlasting love in a way we could see clear as day. However they got there, you’re bonkers if you think there’s nothing special about these. With them, God answered my prayer. He showed me a sign. He reinforced my faith. He’s with me. He’s got Laura. He will wipe every tear. He will undo every sad thing.
Tomorrow is Chemo Smackdown-o-Rama-Fest Round 2. I’m ready.