As I spent my morning time this weekend on a deck overlooking the Guadalupe River, I realized God had much to show me. It was in those moments that I took a few notes of lessons we all know but can see in nature how smoothly everything works together for good.
Save a little for winter. As I walked down the steps to the deck, I found this picture. In every drain hole were two acorns stashed away for another day when acorns wouldn’t so readily abound. Life has a funny way of slipping by and we find ourselves a little short sometimes if we haven’t readily prepared for the cold, blustery winds when winter hits us—physically or spiritually speaking, we need a reserve to draw from. If we save a little for a rainy day, that day almost assuredly comes and we are most thankful that we still have enough. Spiritually, if we have spent time in prayer and study, we have a well of supply for those times when we can only deal with the crisis at hand.
Use the buddy system. Everywhere I looked this morning, turkeys were in groups of three or four, deer ate in pairs, squirrels flew through trees together. When one was eating, the other often had his head up, checking for noises that might mean danger was nearby. A traveling buddy makes life a little easier whether you’re at the water’s edge or the familiar ground of home.
Share. When nature offers an abundance of food, many creatures live in harmony with each other. They share the water, the grass, the seeds, the fertile ground, eating side by side. Well, at least the turkeys and the deer and the squirrels got along, and it made all of their lives simpler. For those who choose to share their food, their resources with others, life is definitely more harmonious.
Water is life. The first thing I did each morning last weekend was to go down to the river, where the wildlife abounds. I saw deer and a few other animals along the way, but water was always nearby. When we traveled to Africa a few years ago, I learned that the most vulnerable time for a giraffe is when she gets a drink from the water because she has to bend her knees in two places to get low enough for her head to reach the water. When other animals came at dawn, the giraffe was the only visitor to the watering hole in the difficult heat of the day. Like the Samaritan woman at the well, she came at noon, evidently not to have to deal with her own predators; for the woman, it was most likely the other women who shunned her for being a woman with several husbands and lovers. It was so like Jesus to use this teachable moment to speak Truth over her that He is the Living Water where we never thirst again. There she was at the well speaking to a man who ordinarily would have never spoken or looked at a Samaritan, much less a Samaritan woman, and He used the parallel of water and thirst to tell her that He was the real life-giving water of eternal satisfaction. But He didn’t stop there. He used that moment to redeem her and be the blessed one to to carry the Good News to the Gentile world. Do you love this story as much as I do? God is so good in that way. He shows us that His well of grace is ready to refresh the soul parched by sin and suffering. He uses teachable moments to tell us the secrets to Life and redeem us not just for Eternity, as if that weren’t enough. In a single moment, He can turn our whole lives around.