Want the solution to the Cryptogram from kuly 11. Go to the blog for luly 11 – below and look at Vanessa’s Comments – she has the answer correct! Congrats to the Jollimore’s.
Now for tonight’s reflection.
Psalm 72 is a wonderful psalm. It has a particularly beautiful rendering in the Biblical Paraphrase – The Message. Verses 1-8 read as follows:
Give the gift of wise rule to the king, O God, the gift of just rule to the crown prince.
May he judge your people rightly,
be honourable to your meek and lowly.
Let the mountains give exuberant witness;
shape the hills with the contours of right living.
Please stand up for the poor,
help the children of the needy,
come down hard on the cruel tyrants.
Outlast the sun, outlive the moon—
age after age after age.
Be rainfall on cut grass,
earth-refreshing rain showers.
Let righteousness burst into blossom
and peace abound until the moon fades to nothing.
Rule from sea to sea,
from the River to the Rim.
I am reminded of the psalm as I sit here again on my front porch. Tonight is stunningly different than last night with the fireflies. Tonight the rain is falling persistently with strength and vigour. There is no thunder, no lighting. There is no violence in this rain. T is totally wonderful. I have just enough shelter here to type without getting me or the laptop wet. The sound is awesome. The smell is wonderful. One of the neighbours must have cut grass today. What a wonderful sound. What a wonderful smell. It feels like everything is being washed clean. As I listen I remembered Psalm 72. “Be rainfall on cut grass, earth refreshing rain showers,” The words are wonderful and they belong together. Amazing how sight and sound can travel your mind to another place, in this case to sacred Hebrew scripture. Such a powerful plea in this psalm. The desire for change of the old world order of power and corruption to justice and mercy and equality. These wise words are about bringing dignity to the lost, the lonely and the rejected. These words are a prayer that those who entrusted with leadership and responsibility would turn from corruption, tyranny and self appreciation to a place of pouring our gifts to all people. Here we are given the poetic beauty of imagining justice to be like the soft sound of rain, the great smell of fresh cut grass, the wonder of bursting blooms, and the peacefulness of watching the moon fade into light as the sun would rise.
My, the rain is beautiful. I am pleased to be in this moment. I have lived out the prayer of Psalm 72. But I am also reminded of baptism, mine and yours. I am reminded of what we covenanted as we past through the earth-refreshing waters. Now if we might just get about the business of bringing about that world of justice and mercy. We need to stand up for the poor and the needy. We need to be the soft rain. We need to be the refreshing water. Yes there is pain and suffering on the journey. Yes it is difficult and there is much to do. Yes we are not able to do it all. But yet we are all equipped to do some. Yet we can cry in the midst of the pain of this journey. We can be reminded of the rain. We can remember that our tears can join the drops that bring life to the dry soil of another’s injustice. So we go – as called to seek and serve Christ. So we go, with the gifts god gave us to be present to each other in our joy and in our sorrow. So we go striving to bring about that justice the Psalmist writes about for all of God’s children. So we go to be a people to speak respect the dignity of every human being, even those who are alone and forgotten. So we go! Go and "be rainfall on cut grass, earth-refreshing rain showers" to the parched.
I hear the rain. But that is not all. Ralph Waldo Emerson said “Let us be silent, that we might hear the whisper of God.” Here on this porch, in this rain, at this moment – that is real. For here I can hear the soft whisper of the Great God of Love. It is so good to be in this place.
I almost don’t want the rain to end.