The excitement is palpable; the air vibrating with energy. The evening news is full of Storm, born in the Pacific and growing now to full strength, as it journeys inland.

Hints of its arrival can be felt in the increasing winds that are ripping the last brown and yellow leaves from the autumn trees whose bare black branches seem to sag from holding them aloft.

TV’s are tuned to the weather channel where viewers watch white clouds swirl over the ocean and pulsating bands of green move into the Great Valley. Residents in low lying areas are warned of flooding while housewives fill bathtubs and stockpile bread. Christmas decorations are moved indoors and hatches battened.

Soon we will watch with awe as the heavens open and pools form and creeks rush and rivers swell and banks are overflown. For a few short hours the wind will blow without restraint and Mother Nature will loosen her girdle, let her hair down and allow her heavy breasts swing free. The earth will open its mouth to receive her gifts and slacken its drought-weary throat.

A part of our soul yearns for such abandonment, to throw ourselves upon the Mother and changed from the old and ancient into something new and unknown that will rise phoenix-like, not from fire but from water. We seek a baptism into a new life, washed clean of the past and ready to see with child eyes. We are reborn, arisen from Buddha’s mud to Christ’s shining star that leads wise men across unknown deserts as we breathe deep, drink long and fall with the rain.