A few weeks ago, when we drove into town after a couple of weeks away at family reunions and weddings, we found scorched, tawny lawns and parched fields. Weeks without rain and temperatures over 100 degrees had sent the area into serious drought.
The past few weeks, we've been blessed with rain -- over five inches. It was too late for the corn crop, and the experts tell us we're still in drought conditions, but it is amazing what a little rain can do to resurrect lawns and plants.
The grass has started growing again, and though our lawn is looking patchy and has some thriving crabgrass colonies, it is looking more green than tan. And the bee balm above, which was nothing but dried seed heads a week ago, has suddenly put out more petals, and is attracting hummingbirds.
The ground cover in our front window bed, which had turned into a brown, dead mat that I thought we'd have to live with until next spring, not only put out new shoots, it has put them out with such vigor that the bed is looking golden-green again. I meant to take a photo a day or two ago when the new shoots were just starting, but I missed my chance.
Some things won't recover. I think we've lost the globe arborvitae by our garage. Around town, I see plenty of bushes and trees that have died. And the experts warn us that others are at risk. We need to keep watering the trees and bushes to catch up, even if the rains continue.
It all provides some vivid images for verses like Jeremiah 17:7-8.
Blessed are those who trust in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD. They shall be like a tree planted by water, sending out its roots by the stream. It shall not fear when heat comes, and its leaves shall stay green; in the year of drought it is not anxious, and it does not cease to bear fruit.
Am I planted by water? Do I need to be watering my roots? Where are timely rains bringing new growth? Thoughts to ponder.
"Instructions for living a life:
Tell about it."
Mary Oliver in "Sometimes"
I've taken on a prayer practice of looking for the moments of light in each day, whether actual or metaphorical, and then writing or posting photos of what I find.