Wildfires have been burning out of control in Utah and across the Intermountain West for weeks now. Thousands of acres have burned. The sky is routinely blighted with reddish, hazy clouds, and puffs of ash swirl everywhere with the breeze. Every day seems to bring news of another fire. Walking outside, you begin to feel like you're breathing in the smoking section of a 1970s restaurant. The fields and mountain slopes have been tinder-dry, and there are local burn bans and firework bans in every town.
People have been steadily praying for rain to help contain or put out the fires, but earlier this week there was no hope of rain. Even as recently as early this morning, the chances of rain were slim.
Here's what the city of Provo looks like from my mom's front porch, right now:
It's been steadily raining for hours. This kind of long, heavy, steady rain is highly atypical for Utah -- usually there are a few flash-flood style thunderstorms in the summer, but little other precipitation.
Think what you like about this rain. I choose to chalk it up to the efficacy of prayer.