I love reading and writing. For that reason alone I decided to become an English major and explore the many complexities of literature. But what I find even cooler than discovering the hidden metaphors in the pages of a great book is the metaphors I find right in front of me on a day-to-day basis.
Today I got smacked with one of the greatest metaphors (and simple reminders) that I have come to love: Every storm runs outta rain.
The message was popularized by the hit country song from Gary Allan, but the message is real and it hit me as I sat inside a Chipotle, watching a torrential downpour while getting lunch with my friend Chelsea. Coincidentally, Chelsea used the song on one of our retreats at Canisius College. She used the song to accompany her talk about the journey of life and how its stormy times do in fact pass and may even bring us to a better place or see things in a better, clearer light.
And so as we sat by waiting for the pouring rain to lighten, I saw how every storm does run out of rain, and we made our way to our respective cars and parted ways after a great lunch filled with conversation and laughs.
But as I began my drive back home, the storm again picked up and I was at a snail’s pace on the thruway, as parts of the 290 had been flooded. I could barely see the cars around me as I gripped my steering wheel maneuvering a path that was a complete washout.
As I got closer to home, the storm had quieted dramatically, to where a drop hadn’t even fallen in my neighborhood. The sun was shining, kids were out playing and I could actually see where I was driving. Not to mention the bugs that had splattered all over my windshield that wouldn’t come off with any amount of windshield wash had disappeared from the heavy rain.
As I parked my car, my windshield was crystal clear and I could see out of it better than I had all week. I sat in my car and just thought about the storm, Chelsea and her talk and the message behind the popular Gary Allan song.
Every storm runs outta rain.
We will find ourselves in the middle of plenty of storms throughout our lives. We will be tightly gripping our steering wheels hoping that we can find our way, even if all we can see are blurred hazards (as I did on my drive home today). We will feel scared and insecure not knowing what will happen to us, or those we love. And we will always wonder how long the storm will linger.
But what I know for certain is that every storm runs out of rain and when all is said and done, it leaves us with a sense of enlightenment. In fact, the storm today had me at my utmost peak of focus and strength. I needed to be attentive on the road, just as when a “storm” that life brings makes me want to be at my peak of focus and strength to come out on top.
Storms in a way help us see better. Just as the heavy rain gave a good cleaning to my disgusting windshield, making it much easier to see out of, we, too, see better after one of life’s “storms.” We see the people that truly matter, the ones that support us, uplift us and better us. We see how strong and capable we are. And the best surprise in all of it is that we just might end up in an even better place that we were in before.