July Pastor’s Pen

I was on my way home. Sunday afternoon. We had worshiped, lunch was good, the weather was…wet, and Lee was having his usual ride home nap. When we got to the bottom of the hill near home, the side road was no longer a side road. It was now a canyon that Evel Knievel would’ve enjoyed jumping! After all the rain, the road had collapsed into the creek under it. Utility trucks were making their way here, there, and everywhere. Side roads and on-ramps were closed. The night before, the rain had been heavy, the lightning frequent, and the transformer across the road had lit up in a brilliant flash of sparks. As it bends around behind the house, my driveway goes down the hill. That part now has a trench or two in it where the water has dredged out its new path to the new pond that has become a regular feature behind the house. If this keeps up, I will not have to go far to enjoy fishing… It was interesting that the sermon that day had been the first half of the story of Elijah running from Jezebel’s threat and going into the wilderness where God found him. As Jesus pointed out, today’s trouble is enough for today. It certainly never seems to be far away! For most of my life, by now we would’ve stopped cutting the grass often because the annual summer drought would be in full swing, the grass would be brown and crunch under your feet, and rain would be something we heard about happening somewhere far away. For the last couple of years, though, lack of rain has not been a problem around here. (But don’t worry – there are plenty of people to assure you climate change is not happening…) We have now changed sides and have enough regular rainfall that when a storm comes the ground cannot soak it all in, leading to collapsed roads, erosion, and the new pond behind my house. What are we to do when the world changes? Adapt! Oh, we can complain – and many will. But as my daddy always said, “I can’t complain. It wouldn’t do any good anyway.” Have full confidence that God will bring good out of whatever comes our way. The forecast this morning caught my attention – the projected high for Wednesday is 71. A high of 71 in June?! Shouldn’t that be 91 by now??!! Well, I for one am not complaining! But that doesn’t mean I am not concerned. It seems there is a new sink hole every month. Conversely, out west fresh water is being used far faster than it is being replaced. Since we can’t ship our weather out there and import some of their dry and achieve a nice balance for all… …I invite you to prayer. Pray for our climate. Pray for our world. Pray about how you use our natural resources. Is every light in the house always on or do you turn them off when not needed? Does the automatic sprinkler still water when it’s raining? Small things add up. Last month, I invited you to join me in doing the Daily Examen form of prayer. Now take that to a next step, looking at how you participate in God’s very good creation. How can each of us work with God to take care of all that has been made and gifted to us? This is my prayerful concern. I invite you to join me in laying this before God. I don’t know what the answer is, but I do know that God does and that God will have a role for me (and you!) in it. Remember that when Elijah ran away into the wilderness, that is where God found and renewed him. God will find and renew us, will renew our world, and the new Jerusalem will come. Until then, get your fishing rod ready. I should have some fish in the new pond behind my house before long…

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