And now, God, do it again--bring rains to our drought-stricken lives
So those who planted their crops in despair will shout hurrahs at the harvest.
So those who went off with heavy hearts will come home laughing, with armloads of blessing. (Psalm 126:4-6, MSG)
This verse brings two things to mind.
I live in Oklahoma, the heart of America's Dust Bowl years. Talk about planting in despair! For years farmers had planted in faith in next year's harvest, which would grow and pay the bank--at least enough for another growing season. Many of them never got to shout hurrahs at the long-delayed harvest. Perhaps a few of the ones who left with heavy hearts did return home with armloads of blessing. I don't really know about Steinbeck's Okies or the transients depicted in the movie Seabiscuit at the end of the Great Depression.
The other thing that springs to mind is the cliche, attributed to the Bible but not written there, "God helps those who help themselves."
Because. . .in spite of despair, in spite of the lack of any real hope, some continue to plant crops. Hmm, that reflects my early years of writing. I wrote for ten years without any real affirmations. I reached a point where I was published regularly--one short piece a year. I had no good reason to think I would ever see any of the six books I had written ever published. Until Barbour bought Romanian Rhapsody from me in 2003 (published in 2005).
Once again I am writing a book without any definite hope it will be published. I'm not (quite) in despair, but if it does sell, you bet, I'll be shouting hurrahs at the harvest. Along with my agent and all my friends who have encouraged that my writing life isn't limited to Heartsong (as much as I love writing those books. They suit me.)
Now, perhaps the despair is whether the physical therapy will ever give me some of the freedom that I crave. Freedom to leave, freedom to spend more time with my family, perhaps to attend an occasional writers' meeting or church service. If--when--that day comes, I must shout wth hurrahs.
Those farmers couldn't cheer if they hadn't planted. Planting crops in despair is the essence of faith. God, in His time, sends the seasons of rains to bring those dreams to life.
Today's favorite verse: Stand in awe of God's Yes. Oh, how he blesses the one who fears God! (Psalm 128:4, MSG)