It’s been rainy lately. So rainy. And dreary, and cloudy, and bleh. Of course, those rainy days brought needed nourishment to the soil. Flowers were fed, and the birds took their puddle-baths. The greens of the grass and the leaves on the trees are especially breathtaking as a result of their many showers.

But those rainy days were also a bit hard on my soul. After day two or day three, I yearned for sunbeams—for light to break through the canopy of gloom. I yearned for a change of scenery that sometimes requires a change in the weather.

On Wednesday my wish was granted. The clouds parted, the sun rose, and a beautiful day unfolded before me. The birds were especially chipper. Butterflies fluttered about…

It was joyous.

And because my classes ended on Tuesday, and I am a free agent until my first (and only) exam on Monday afternoon, I took advantage of the opportunity. I spent the day with my husband, William, and our little dog, Bo. We walked trails. We had the pleasure of meeting a beautiful black snake as she slithered across our path. I cradled the head of a magnificent chestnut quarter horse, whose winter coat was still woolly and present, in my arms. I marveled at two pairs of cardinals, chirping to each other from their treetop homes. I felt the warmth of sunlight on my face and my shoulders.

And I was blessed.

We spent the rest of our day with friends—at farms and dinner tables—in fellowship. It was hard not to be full of thanks. It was hard not to feel the presence of God in each of those simple, miraculous, astounding, ordinary pleasures. It was hard not to be reminded that God really is all around us if we only take the time to notice.

I am grateful.

I hope our summers, no matter where they are spent, are filled with the love bestowed upon us by rainy days turned sunny, cardinal chatter, and a warm horse nuzzle. I hope our hearts are filled with thanksgiving. I hope we find God in the ordinary. I hope we experience love in all that love has to offer.