This parable is about a bank manager, a good Christian man, who discovered one day that his bank had lost hundreds of thousands of dollars through a combination of negligence and mismanagement. Even worse, it was entirely and exclusively his fault. What was he going to do?
He remembered the story of Gideon and the fleece, and decided to pray for God’s guidance. That night, in bed, he quietly prayed, “O Lord, if you want me to turn myself in and take the consequences, please let the dew be heavy on the ground tomorrow, but if you’ll forgive me for hiding my mistakes and if you’ll bless me in undoing the damage, then please let the ground be dry.”
In the morning he got up, and the ground was saturated: every blade of grass was covered with heavy droplets, and so much was dripping off the trees it looked like it was raining in the shade. So he looked around, and frowned and thought, and went to work, but didn’t say anything to anyone about what was going on.
That night he came home and decided to try again. “O God,” he prayed, “if you want me to give up and disgrace my family and destroy my career, then please let the ground be dry tomorrow, but if you’ll help me pull this off and make things right again, then let there be more dew.”
Next morning he got up, and everything was dry as old bones, and the grass actually made a slight crinkly sound when you walked on it. So he frowned, and thought, and went to work, but didn’t tell anyone anything.
That night he decided to try one more time. “Merciful Lord and Savior,” he prayed, “if you want me to cause a major banking crisis and risk financial panic, besides devastating my family and leaving me with no way to support my children, then please let it be wet only on my side of the street, and dry on the other; but if you will help me get through this without anyone finding out, then let it be a quiet morning. Amen”
The next morning he was awakened by a huge crack of thunder, and he jumped up and ran to the window. All down his side of the street, there was a howling thunderstorm—and yet, inexplicably, it stopped precisely in the middle of the road, and not a drop of rain was falling on the other side. There was even a warm, golden sunrise shining on the houses opposite, while his own side was steeped in gloom and almost invisible in the heavy deluge.
The banker could take no more, and fell to his knees weeping. “Oh God, oh God, oh God,” he cried, “how am I ever going to discover Your will if Satan keeps screwing up the weather?”