Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Some like it hot...

"Some like it hot, some like it cold...," says the old rhyme, but I would protest that NO ONE likes it THIS hot. This time of year always brings me a greater appreciation for the verses in Psalms/Proverbs about water; they just pop off the page... trees planted by streams of water that bear fruit even in drought (ahh for the shade of a nice cool, leafy tree.. this is how hard drought is...), good news being like cold water (how refreshing! with ice perhaps... or maybe poured over my head...), the Psalmist thirsting after God as you thirst for water (how single focused my thoughts would be)... A new hot season connection was made for me this week. Hopefully my attempt to explain the nebulous thoughts won't prove, as I often suspect, that my brain has cooked 'en tete'! In Bible study this week, we talked about how longing is inherent in waiting. If you don't long for something, you don't even notice you are waiting. We discovered that, in one version anyway, the same word in Hebrew is translated as "long" in one sentence and "wait" in the following phrase.
Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him." Isaiah 30:18
This put a new spin for me on the idea of God waiting for me- there is inherent longing in that. How He longs for a strong relationship with me!?! Amazing but true... Also interesting that he waits to be gracious to me. He has something up his sleeve with the timing there, but most of all, this discovery put another spin on the idea of me waiting on God. There are lots of verses that I have come across over the years talking about waiting on God. "Those who wait on the LORD will renew their strength" for instance. What if instead of picturing drumming my fingers as I waited impatiently for him to act, I pictured me longing for HIM? As I drip in my "cool" 96 degree bedroom, this speaks physically to me. Because the humidity has been high lately, each day we wait impatiently for the start of the rains to break the pressure and the high temperatures. Unfortunately, although we sometimes have showers now and again through May and June, it is unlikely that regular rainfall will start before July. So the waiting, full of longing, seeming to last forever, for rain I am doing, is a physical reminder that I need to be longing and waiting - using similar emotions-for something more substantial! The nice part is the promise that is slipped in the end of that verse in Isaiah, BLESSED are all who wait... Someday, the longing will be filled! Both my tangable longing for rain, but even more, my longing for justice, for peace, for healed relationships, for so much more... both now and in the time to come. He who longs and waits to be gracious and show me favor will finally get to the end of his wait. I'm so glad he doesn't leave us hanging! So this year as I sweat, I am trying to use it to remind me to make sure my real longing is for something beyond just the ac!

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