My heart was warmed. How special, a gift from my boyfriend. It was 14 years ago, and I was spending time with Daniel and his family. The stone he had bought for me was a treasure; it bore the words, “After the storm comes the rainbow.” At that point in my life there were not many storms. Life was good, I was in love and waiting for the day I would be Mrs. Daniel Yoder.
I took the stone home and set it on my desk.
Years later, that stone could always be seen somewhere in our house as we cared for the family God had given us.
Twelve years down the road of time I was sitting in the kitchen recliner minus the one who had given that stone. Instead, we were making funeral arrangements. It was true. There was no reversing it.
“Gloria, would you like a table with special items linked to Daniel and gifts that you or the children gave to him, and he gave to you?” someone suggested.
It sounded painfully precious. “Yes, and get that stone.”
More items were added to the growing stash. I leafed through random notes we as a family had given to one another and came across one note that especially caught my attention. This is what it said: I can’t wait to see you all again. I love you all! W/ love, Daniel.
The following morning was intense. We were getting six children dressed to go to Daddy’s visitation in the afternoon and evening.
It seemed that every way I turned, a pair of pants was missing, or suspenders were misplaced. I was in the entrance grabbing another sweater when I glanced out the window. “Look! It’s a rainbow- a rainbow in the West!”
Only moments later, everyone was on the porch absorbing the reality of the wonder before us. A perfect rainbow was arched right over the track hoe where Daniel had been pinched between the tracks on the hoe and a tree. Both sides of the rainbow came down in front of the tree line. The scene was richer than I could absorb. And to think that it was in the West! Never before did we have a rainbow in the West. I pondered over it all as I helped the children finish getting ready for the day ahead.
Then my mind briefly flashed back to a paper my little sister Keturah had colored for me right over the time Daniel had given me that stone. She had the words, “Make it a rainbow day,” printed in large letters.
Today as I think back over the whole scene, it is so real- I feel as if it is happening today, my stomach even feels much like it did on that unforgettable day. You know, I’ll never forget… I will never forget the anguish in seeing my children minus the Daddy they adored, I will never forget the depth of the realization that I’m a widow at the age of 32, and never will I forget the presence of my Lord, even closer than the worst of the situation.
Now, dear friends, I must be moving on with getting breakfast for the children, but as you go about your day, make it a rainbow day. Yes, you won’t be able to do it on your own, but as you give those fragments of pieces that cut the depth of your being to our great God, He will heal and mend in ways never thought possible.
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