Dying of Thirst

I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Psalm 32:8 (RSV)

I’ve always wanted a Japanese Maple. I knew they were expensive and difficult to grow, but its beauty would bring vitality to my nondescript garden; so I bought one. A week later its leaves had withered from the widespread drought. Bordering on despair, I poured a solution of nutrients at its base, only to watch the life-giving liquid wash away across the cracked earth. It was going to take more than a shower to save that tree. Undaunted, I gently poked holes into the dried out soil to provide a waterway to the parched roots.

As I tended the dying plant I was reminded of the tireless efforts of the Great Gardener, Our Father. He tends to us — the trees in His garden — in seasons of plenty and in seasons of drought. At times we flourish, but at other times we become so parched, withered and callous in our spiritual walk that we cannot recognize or absorb His blessings. Like dried-out soil we repel the very thing we crave: the life-giving nourishment of His Word. Lingering illnesses, heartbreaks, financial challenges are not meant to destroy us. They are tools Our Lord uses to prod us like a garden hoe to open our eyes and our hearts to Him. Only after He has cultivated and prepared us will we accept His gentle sprinklings and wonderful showers of blessing.

Father, Help us accept the challenging life circumstances You permit to enter our lives to bring us closer to You. Amen.