It is as though we forget, in winter, what a thunderstorm feels like. Not in the sense that we can't recall it, but in the sense that it leaves our minds and must be consciously recalled. There's that part after the rain has started, but is just spitting a little, not really coming down, as though the clouds haven't yet committed. And then there's my favourite part, that swift crescendo when the sky opens up all at once, the air is suddenly thick with water and the massive drops, moving earthward with real force now, make impact with elegant violence.
It is the closest thing to the feeling of prayer that I know of. If someone were to ask me if I find prayer relaxing, I would have to give them an emphatic no. It is not. At least not usually. And why should it be? To be a point of intersection of Heaven and Earth, to stand on the fault line, is not something we should expect to be calming. It is elegant and violent and tumultuous and wrenching and pulls you apart like it's making room between the two halves for something. Like a freight train passing right through the middle of you. The beauty of it is astounding.
Of course, individual results may vary.