Isaiah 55:1-11 ~
I was drawn to the last section of the text - the part about rain coming down from heaven and having an agenda from God. It waters, make growth possible. It has a purpose and the creative order has made it such the rain does what it's supposed to do before it returns to the sky.
Water. There is a finite amount of water on the earth.
I went poking around at resources online after reading this passage and found a great classroom activity here. "Water (H2O) is a very important molecule. Because of water, Earth is able to support many different life forms. In humans, water makes up between 68% and 72% of the body volume (depending on gender and body composition), and it is so important that we cannot survive longer than 3 days on average without replenishment. If you look at a model globe, approximately 70% of the surface is covered by water. Of that total water, 97% is in the oceans and is undrinkable without desalination treatment (to remove salt). Of the remaining fresh water, less than one half of one percent is available in surface sources like lakes, rivers, and swamps. Most fresh water exists as glacial ice or is trapped underground"
As I write this reflection, there is a very thin layer of snow that has just fallen onto the ground. By this afternoon, it will be have melted into the ground and/or evaporated. It will, by this text, have fulfilled its destiny: watering the earth, providing seed for the sower and bread for the eater.
Does the word of God in our lives have the same efficiency? I have to be honest, I am not always efficient with my resources - my time, my talents, or my treasures. Sometimes I use them; sometimes I let them go to waste. Sometimes I overuse them, abusing them.
As a young pastor, I was told, "if we would simply answer the phone and do the things in front of us, we would keep from idleness while following the lead of the Spirit." At first blush, that almost sounds like I've been given cart blanche to do whatever I wish. But that was not its intent. The truth is - if I begin each day with the intent to do the things that are most important - the things that are right in front of me. If I choose not to ignore the difficult things on my todo list that are indeed important, I find myself following the lead of the Spirit.
I almost see those important things like the snow that has fallen on the ground today. I believe the Spirit provides in a daily manner guidance if we would simply look at what is in front of us and act responsibly.
And before we think that sounds too easy or too unintentional - that which is rained down on us, the snow that lays on the terrain of our lives... it has an agenda. And it's going to keep pursuing its agenda until its fulfilled. The difficult part is to discern which part of the agenda is ours and which is God's.
The pictures in this article are available at To the Clouds Photography
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