I live in a place where it rains…a lot. All kinds of rain, at all kinds of times.
But I recently read a news article that said we could be in danger of a drought.
Really? It rains here almost every day. We’ve had several hail storms over the last few weeks, and the skies are dark grey even as I look off to the west right now.
Drought? How can this be in a land of so much rain?
Apparently, we’ve had so much rain that the ground is saturated. The subterranean aquifers are full, and thus any new rain that falls basically gets wasted…running down to the sea or evaporating (eventually). As such, there is cause for concern.
The article attributes this situation to mismanagement on behalf of the powers that be. They’re not correctly handling our abundance, and the expectation is that as a result we will eventually run into a shortage.
I can imagine that some people must have been reading that very article in the midst of a downpour, and found its warning pretty difficult to accept. Are we really in danger? Look how much water there is around us!
When we find ourselves in the midst of having plenty, it can be fairly easy not to worry too much about the next day, or even about proper management of what we currently have. “We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it…for now, let’s eat, drink, and be merry!”
I must admit, I personally don’t worry too much about running out of water. It might be naivete: could the powers that be really mismanage things so egregiously that we would actually run low on water? There’s so much of it! It seems like they would have to do an unconscionably poor job in order for the situation to get that bad. Certainly someone would stop them before things got so out of control. Someone would complain. Someone would vote them out of office.
I’m certainly not a doomsayer, but I am an advocate for intentionality in living. It is amazing how a little bit here and there, spread out over the course of time, can amount to something significant. Saving a little water each day can eventually make a difference. Taking some small steps now to manage the current deluge can provide a reservoir during harder times ahead.
I wonder: where are the areas in my own life where I have become lazy due to plenty? Which are the spheres of my own existence where I have relaxed my vigilance, where I have slackened my intentionality, because the guarantee of continued smooth sailing seems so assured? This isn’t a call to worry about every aspect of life all the time, but a challenge to mindfulness in the moment, in order to spare coming crises.
I have much rain, much grace, much that is undeserved in my life. It seems like I have little excuse not to take some of that freedom and use it to consider my use, my stewardship, of all this blessing. I have been kept from certain worries that I might instead walk in wisdom.
But am I doing so?