"Therefore we do not lose heart.
Though outwardly we are wasting away,
yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
For our light and momentary troubles are achieving
for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on
what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary,
but what is unseen is eternal."
2 Corinthians 4:16
For years, February days when I was housebound with
small children were the hardest times of all. I longed for the
sun to shine two days in a row. I yearned for spring, knowing all
too well that maddening March, with its layers of accreted winter's filth,
barred my isolated heart from the rioting green blooms of April.
It was during these shadowy days, dragging with plodding prisoner's
feet, that I learned how important it is to "keepin talkin" ( a phrase coined
by my son, David, when he was two) with God.
A major part of the mature Christian journey is learning how to handle
those times when the heavens are locked, when our lives are weighted with
winter garments of despair, pain, worry, and loss.
We try desperately to convince ourselves that we don't serve a God
who has absented Himself from the listening post, who has hung up a
"Shop's Closed" sign and taken off to vacation somewhere in the balmy south.
The Psalms are a prayer journal, an ongoing record of one man's
conversations with God. Many of these poem-songs are about times
when David hit a roadblock to intimate dialogue with God:
"O Lord, how many are my foes!
How many rise up against me!
Many are saying of me,
"God will not deliver him."
"Give ear to my words, O Lord,
consider my sighing.
Listen to my cry for help
my King and my God."
"O Lord, do not rebuke me in Your anger
or discipline me in Your wrath.
Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am faint;
O Lord, heal me, for my bones are in agony."
David's words reiterate the old truth I began to learn while sitting
at the dining table, tutored by my own small child:
When your soul feels like a gray February day, and all seems to be rain,
fog, and chill drizzle, the overcast can be lifted if you will learn to
just "keepin' talkin' " with God.
Purple Crocus blooming in February
Lucinda Clare Macy
A devotional by Karen Burton Mains