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Rain on our parade
Kim Baldwin
Kim Baldwin

For many, these next few days and weeks consist of a lot of events that will generally take place outside. For my community, that involves city-wide garage sales, student field days and a huge multiday countywide celebration that includes outdoor performances, student competitions at the park, a carnival and a fantastically impressive parade that attracts residents of our county and beyond to attend. 

The talk has already begun about how it’s looking like this year’s county-wide events are gearing up to have “perfect weather”.  

My husband says he stopped praying for rain a long time ago. It’s not that he doesn’t believe his prayers for rain are heard; it’s just that there’s more folks wanting to go to that outdoor concert or the widely anticipated county-wide parade not in the rain.

I have a tab open on my computer that leads me straight to a website containing the current Kansas drought maps. While the maps are full of vivid colors including deep reds and oranges, the colors on display are not the ones we want to see. 

The most concerning statistic I can’t help but continually check on is a map that shows the soil moisture conditions based on the soil moisture content of the top 20 centimeters of soil.  

Those top 20 centimeters of soil is the lifeblood for the start of our crops. It’s where the seeds germinate and take root. And in our area, it’s dry — as in deep red, not the color you want to see on the map, dry.

While our corn and popcorn seeds are now in the ground, we’ve decided to hold off planting the soybeans until we catch a rain. We’re waiting for a different kind of “perfect weather” compared to so many other folks right now. 

It is my hope that before this piece goes to print, the rain will have arrived for Kansas farmers and ranchers. It is my hope that the drought monitor maps I have been continually checking to see any signs of change begin showing change for the better. 

And while my husband may not ask for the rain specifically, I ask others to join me in prayer:

Lord, we cherish the times with our loved ones when we can share a meal together outside. We know for many a lot of planning has to be done to make that happen, but please, Lord, we ask you to help those families enjoy their time together as they move their picnic indoors.

Lord, we know it’s near the end of the school year, and children need to be outside, but provide the teachers with enough strength and patience to keep the kids inside for recess to avoid soggy shoes and socks, wet hair and muddy floors.

Lord, we know that it will be an inconvenience for many, and that there may be less seating and frustrated families, but please move that graduation ceremony from the football field into the school’s gym.

And Lord, we know that a lot of work is put into the building of those floats and a lot of people travel many miles to attend, but please, Lord, we ask you to help those parade-goers embrace their celebratory spirit under open umbrellas. Please, Lord, rain on our parade.


“Insight” is a weekly column published by Kansas Farm Bureau, the state’s largest farm organization whose mission is to strengthen agriculture and the lives of Kansans through advocacy, education and service. Kim Baldwin is a McPherson County farmer and rancher.