As the summer continues to be a heat trial for everyone and A/C expends itself, I remember the “Dirty Thirties” long ago. Dad hung the brown blanket over the windows and wet it down down with the hose. Then he turned on the large black electric fan, a-whirring on the blanket and a kind of coolness filled the room. The heat of August was stifling, the year is 1941, when I was 12 years old. Grosmom Emilie Siemens lay on the bed in a coma, sweat gathering on her forehead. Her time on earth was not long.
Temperatures soared into the 100's in Oklahoma again that year. Farmers had no knowledge of how to water crops via irrigation. The crops withered and died, burying all hope. Top soil blew for several years with wind from Oklahoma as far as Illinois.
And now again, we have soaring temperatures causing drouth conditions and our country's farmers pray for rain and hope. The one rain of July this year watered not only the earth but also my soul. I could hear the dying vegetation gulping down the saving rain. The hot weather soon returned and the sun scorched the earth. I contemplated the cycles of weather gone amuck and man's constant struggle between the search for God and rebellion to God. How can we find a comfortable happy medium way of life? The answer is in the capriciousness of how we face temptations in the moment. When things are too 'easy', we tend to forget to praise God and thank Him. Going to the scripture, the Word of God, I find:
God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land. Psalm 68:6
And in the midst of this thinking, God plants a miracle. My daughter-in-law sent a reference of faith and hope from 2 Kings 3:15-17. He then said, "God's word: Dig ditches all over this valley. Here's what will happen—you won't hear the wind, you won't see the rain, but this valley is going to fill up with water and your army and your animals will drink their fill. This is easy for God to do; he will also hand over Moab to you. You will ravage the country: Knock out its fortifications, level the key villages, clear-cut the orchards, clog the springs, and litter the cultivated fields with stones."
The words easy for God to do! Popped out at me. He would sell this house and we would be able to move closer to family to have help with my dear husband. A breath of fresh air flooded my soul, as fresh as a spring rain...
The next day, we had a buyer – and in 5 days the contract was signed. This is after we signed with the realtor 22 days earlier. God works with whirlwind speed in answer to prayer and waiting for Him.
How many times has God used His creations to shape lives to help us know His mighty power? The wind, the sun, the rain, storms and even the large fish who swallowed Jonah. How often do we stray from God in our search for more of this world and its 'wisdom'? When we have enough...praise God. When we have need...ask God. When we have more than we need...Give.
When we lived in Watonga on a thoroughfare, I sat on the front porch and wondered where all those cars were going as they passed our house. What were they searching for? How many minutes were spent in those man-made vehicles that carried them to and fro? What was their purpose? Then I thought how God must watch man scurrying about on his earth with no fore-thought.
Is this the way our lives are to be? There is more...much more. For God has a plan for our lives...where we are and what we will do, and always to the glory of God..
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:11-13
What a joy to live in His Will, knowing I am sinful, and yet He loves me enough to order my days. Yes, we will deeply miss those who have become so dear to us through these 38 years. And we find God's people in many places of this world and where they are, we are 'home'. When our hearts search for His righteousness and live with Him each moment of the day, we are 'home' with Him.
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. Psalm 42:1
Yes, we will miss many folks when we move in September. But it is never good bye when we are in the Lord.
As we say in our small group of ladies for our benediction....And now, may the Lord watch between you and me while we are absent, one from the other...