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Gentle Rain or a Hailstorm?

Gentle Rain or a Hailstorm?

I gave the last of three kisses goodnight to the sweet objects of my exhaustion and shuffled down the hallway toward freedom. My evening plans centered on a bowl of popcorn and a few hours of mindless television.

The day had been a whirlwind of errands, mounds of laundry, sibling squabbles, and endless cleaning. This mama was clocking out.

As I slipped into my end-of-day sweatpants and t-shirt, my gaze fell on my Bible and devotional journal. With a groan, I surrendered to the stab of guilt and settled in for a few minutes of “quality” quiet time.

My daily reading included the song of Moses in Deuteronomy 32 and focused on verse two. Let my teaching fall like rain and my words descend like dew, like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants.

Thoughts of shortchanging my time with God evaporated as conviction poured from each word.

Let my teaching fall like rain…

I thought back over the day with my girls. A typical day held myriad opportunities to teach of love, mercy, stewardship, responsibility, patience, and more. Did I teach my girls? And did that instruction fall like rain?

Or was it more like a hailstorm?

Did my girls grow under the wings of a loving mother today, or were they merely tolerated? Their physical needs were met, but what of their spiritual needs?

Moses’ song gives us a beautiful image of godly teaching—one of gentle patience and nurturing compassion. Our children are tender plants lifting their fertile hearts to receive the dew and abundant rain of Christ-centered instruction.

What opportunities we miss when our teaching is cloaked in irritation and impatience. When our first thoughts are of survival, trudging through the day until the time is our own.

As the hour grew late, my token time of prayer became an evening of restoration and renewal. If my heart’s desire was to raise children with depth of faith and character, then it must begin with being a parent guided and directed each moment by the Holy Spirit.

Our tender plants need just the right amounts of rain, sunshine, and nutrients.

What a privilege to be the Master Gardener’s instrument of His love and care for them.

By: Leigh Ann Thomas is a wife, mother, grammy, and the author of Ribbons, Lace, and Moments of Grace—Inspiration for the Mother of the Bride (SonRise Devotionals). A regular contributor to,, and, she has also published with Southern Writers Suite T, Power for Living, and Southern Writers Best Short Fiction. You can find Leigh Ann on her front porch daydreaming story plots, or at her website,

Join us at for our parenting blog each Monday-Friday and for info about the Just 18 Summers novel.


  1. I. Love. This. You spoke truth there, my friend. Deep things of God for application today. Thank you for wring as a gentle rain; writing a cricuial reminder for those who are His.

    • I apologize. I meant to type, “a CRUCIAL reminder”.

    • Thank you, Charla! I’m so thankful for the Holy Spirit’s conviction!

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