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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Written by Mary C. Earle

Sunday, May 3

O God, you are my God; eagerly I seek you;
my soul thirsts for you, my flesh faints for you,
as in a barren and dry land where there is no water.
—Psalm 63:1

Here in central Texas a few Septembers ago, we had day after day of triple digit temperatures. And we had no rain. In my yard, deep cracks became visible in the soil. The leaves on the trees had no luster. It was a full-time job keeping water in the bird baths and food in the feeders.

In a barren and dry land, water becomes singularly important. All of our local conversations focused on rain, on the respective qualities of various drip hoses, on how long the dry spell would last.  A newspaper article reported that in our region, water would soon be more precious than oil.

A friend found a massive ant invasion in her downstairs bathroom. The ants were looking for water. All varieties of creatures began to seek water in homes and from faucets. One neighbor saw a possum drinking from her pool.

The psalmist would look at our circumstances and say, “This is an opportunity for recognizing how deeply you thirst for God. As much as the creatures desire water, so you are created to thirst for God. As much as you scan the skies for rain, so you need to be scanning your life for God’s presence and guidance.” 

In our culture we tend to see times of hardship and drought as times when we have been abandoned by God. The psalmist has another perspective. The psalmist would say to us, “Be on the lookout. The hard times teach you what is truly important. The drought reminds you of your utter dependence upon God. The ants in the bathroom can teach you more than you imagined.”

Grant me, my God, the wit to seek you and to recognize you even in hardship, in pain, in distress. Amen.

The Signposts for May originally appeared on explorefaith in 2006.