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By , on August 7th, 2012

A Dry and Thirsty Land

In His infinite wisdom God has withheld rain and much of our country has suffered through drought conditions. Often the question arises, “Why?” Why is there drought? While there may be a scientific explanation such as two recurring La Niña weather patterns that have sent drier than normal conditions, we know that God is ultimately in control. And if God is in control of all the weather patterns, we need to be asking ourselves what is God saying to us? As we look around us we see a drought of biblical proportions — half of all counties in the entire United States are affected by this drought. The pictures in the news are astounding. And just because the shelves at the local grocery store are still full, it does not really seem to affect us so much, so we carry on with life. But what can we learn from this drought?

First, could this drought in nature be a symptom of the sickness and spiritual drought that affects our nation? Everywhere we look, we see moral declension. Marriage is denigrated, life is devalued, God is marginalized, and the new tolerance of our age has in fact become quite intolerant. It is not difficult to be a Jeremiah these days, weeping and mourning over the state of our nation and our own hearts. And as we weep and mourn it is very easy to pass by the important lessons that God is teaching us that He is laying His finger upon the sins of our own hearts and the sins of our nation, exposing the spiritual drought through a natural drought.

Secondly, have we forgotten God’s gracious dealings with us in providing for our every need? So often we are tempted to say, “My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth” (Deut. 8:17). But God is saying, “But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth” (Deut. 8:18). Every single blessing we receive in this life flows from the grace of God and not from ourselves. Let us never forget our dependence upon the God in whom we live and move and have our being.

Thirdly, do we as the people of God need to be led to fresh repentance and reliance on the grace of God? So often we are blind to our sins and faults. But through this drought is God calling us to reflect upon our sinfulness and then turn to Him with all our sins for fresh measures of grace and an outpouring of the Holy Spirit? Will we heed the cry of the prophet, “Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness upon you” (Hosea 10:12)?

Fourthly, are we also learning that God is still gracious? The drought could be so much worse than it is; we deserve worse. We deserve more than the scorching sun and soaring temperatures of the summer heat. By nature, we deserve the scorching heat of God’s fury against sin, but God is reminding us that today is still the day of salvation, “Today, if you will hear my voice, harden not your hearts” (Heb. 3:7-8).

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