Days and weeks of drought affect so many residents of this country, trapped under a heat dome held firmly in place. Sunlight and drought are too much with us. Soothing, refreshing rain is too distant a memory. We are grateful, most of us, that we live in homes with fans and air conditioning. We drive in cool cars on our way to another cool place. Meanwhile, construction and farming, soldiering, policing, firefighting, and emergency work go on as best they can. Ranchers struggle to draw water from deep wells or dig trenches to irrigate. This is merely a taste, a test of solidarity with desert dwellers.
Rain (and drought) fall on the just and the unjust alike. God, is it in your power to send rain to the thirsty, to dry up flooded lands and homes, to extinguish raging wildfires, to keep all living things safe from harm?
No, it is not. It is for all of us to help one another cope. We can’t fix the weather though we can be smart about energy and water use. Some say to pray for rain. I say, pray for life in hard times and good.
Yet now we know about Somalia, where so many are dying of thirst, hunger, and warfare. Thousands have walked for 10 days or more to relatively safe camps in Kenya. Many have been attacked on the way and everything they carried was taken away by thieves. Many have died on the way, especially children. There is no time to grieve; only time to save the living. Dust to dust, bones to dry bones, wind where there is nothing to tame it.
We struggle with problems of our own—keeping ourselves cool and nourished, watching billionaires fight for every dime they can control, indulging our children with possessions, desperately trying to find and keep jobs, cutting budgets at home, and in all levels of government, into the very marrow, averting our eyes.
Slowly we ourselves become the dry bones, the dust, then nothing but the wind.
Let us instead become the rain.
. . . And there’s more:
A terror attack in downtown Oslo and a related shooting at a youth camp there has taken at least 92 lives. Massive damage to buildings around downtown by the car/truck bomb and a horrific shooting at an annual political camp for young adults has shattered Norway’s peaceful existence. We are saddened, angered, and discouraged about the state of the world and the latest unfolding tragedies.
All these we hold in our hearts with compassion, blessings, and healing prayers.