August 17, 2011

Whoever Waters....

There are no gutters on my house. Rain gathers in the crevices where the rooflines meet and run down to splatter and clatter on the rock steps that lead down from the porch onto the back patio.

It is a gentle rain this morning, the stream of water clattering on the steps in a reassuring way reminds me of the goodness of God in the provision of water, the very necessity of life. In the distance soft bass tones of thunder rumble away from where I am, the clouds gently releasing what I like to call a soaking rain.

In the Horn of Africa, the rains have not come in season and the soaking rain they so desperately need await October, the next hope for relief to come from the sky. The ground, inches in dust, is being dug into by fathers and mothers. They dig deep in the dry crust making holes to cradle their babies who have died because of no water. The earth crumbled and cracked, is now heaped in mounds, marking the devastating end of the life of a child.

In simple faith, Lord, I pray for a drink of water and a source of food this day for each suffering child, each person you created for your glory, people caught in desperate grip of drought, of famine. Lord, I thank you for this rain, for water from my faucets, an ice-maker, and a pantry full of food. You have soaked my life with blessings of provision. For what reason, Lord? Give me eyes to see, ears to hear, a mind to understand. Show me where to bring a blessing from You through me. To whom do I bring it? Will you give me water to give to others that they may live? My pantry shows no evidence of drought. My faucets run freely. Who am I to receive such abundance? I fear that this abundance will give way to a drought of the soul. In abundance or drought, I will trust you. I am a willing vessel. You have filled. Now pour me out. 
Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, 
and whoever waters will himself be watered.     
Proverbs 11:25 (ESV)

August 6, 2011

You Light My Lamp

For You light my lamp; 
The LORD my God illumines my darkness. 
(Ps. 18:28 NASB)
There was just a tiny crack at the bottom of the shade in the window above my bathtub, but it was just enough light and at just the right angle that it caused me to stop and consider the strange occurrence sitting on the tub surround.

Light streamed from the crack above through an empty votive holder. The candle has needed to be replaced for some time now so I knew it wasn’t lit. Refracting, bending through amber glass the light shown in and through the votive to reflect on the tile surround. It was joy in a tiny miracle—a light in a votive with no candle.

The light showing in and through that votive found it luminosity from outside the window, the sun climbing toward noon to close up another morning. Slipping through a crack in the shade, the beauty of refracted light made me stop and take notice.

Everyday I wake and pick up something to try to get the light of life my lit. I was made to shine---not for my glory but for God’s. Lately, it has been a struggle that has left me feeling like a candle without a wick, unable to burn at all.

God sent me a little lesson this morning and it wasn’t a science lesson on the refraction of light. What I am realizing is that the only way that God’s glory can be shone through me is when He is the source.  He shines light in and through me to his glory. I don’t even need a candle or a wick. All I need to be is a vessel placed humbly before the Light. God is the source of  His own shining.  He doesn’t need me laboring about how in the world to give Him glory. He is willing and able to do that through any crack I provide to let His glory shine.
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.  (James 1:17 NASB)