30 You send forth Your Spirit, they are created; And You renew the face of the earth. Psalm 104:30 (NKJV)
By Bro. John L. Cash, “Country Preacher Dad”
When we were newlyweds, Susan used to drive back to Arkansas to visit her mom for a week, and I would stay at home to preach at the country church. She would leave me a list of things that I was supposed to remember to do.
Most of the time, I would go about my regular business each day, until it got close to the end of the week. Then, just before she arrived back home, I would hurry and do all the things that she had left me to do.
That usually worked out fine. But one time her instructions included the words “Water my plants.” Clearly, this is something that I should have looked after day-by-day. By the time I got around to thinking about her ferns and potted plants they had been sitting close to 5 days in the oppressive heat of Mississippi summer, without a drop of water to drink. They looked so burnt, wilted and sad that I was sure that I had Bookshelf-scapekilled them all.
Something that I had noticed, though, is that women often put their potted plants out in the yard when the weatherman predicts rainshowers. So I decided to try this. I wasn’t hopeful, but it was worth a shot.
Later on that morning, the Lord sent us a slow, cool, soaking summer shower. And when I returned to the plants that evening, I was astonished. The potted plants that had been on intensive-care-life-support that morning had returned to life! No longer were they brown, drooping and dry. Instead they were standing tall, robust and green. The rain had brought about a miraculous transformation.
Since then, I’ve always believed that God can water plants better than people can. The experts would probably point out some scientific reason why a rain shower works better than a watering can. But I’m not buying into that. In my book, rain just works better than a water hose because the Creator of the universe sends the rain to water His earth.
Something else I believe is that when we are spiritually parched, God can restore our souls just as His rain restores the earth. When I’m physically, mentally, and spiritually worn out, I try to use every resource that is available to me to strengthen myself.
The Lord has given us so many ways in this life that we can help ourselves, and we shouldn’t neglect those. But after I’ve done all I can do, I ask God to send His help from above, and He always does. Many times I’ve become weary in the work of the Lord, but He always helps me to get rested up again.
When I was a little boy, at our church we used to sing a hymn about “Showers of Blessings.” I liked the song back then, but I think I love it even more now. I’ve lived long enough to have revived by the rain that the Lord sends to His children—if we’ll only take the time to ask Him for it.
Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad.” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and has spent the last 26 years being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi. (On week days he has a desk-job at a public school and teaches Latin on closed-circuit-television.) He and his lovely wife, Susan, and his sons, Spencer (age 20) and Seth (age 17) live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church (where the church-cats, “Sister” and “Miss Louvenia” tend to stay in trouble for nibbling on the indoor house plants.) He would love to hear from you in an email sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Photo by Julian Rotela Rosow via Flickr