A United Methodist Pastor's Theological Reflections

"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory (nikos) through our Lord Jesus Christ." - I Corinthians 15:57

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Dave's Deep Thoughts - When It Rains It Pours

Here's Pastor Dave McDowell's weekly devotional that he sends out to members of his church. Dave is my brother and serves as the Music Minister at Stewartstown UMC in PA.

When it rains it pours……
and sometimes it just smacks you on the head.

I don’t believe in the adage,
“bad things come in threes”

I have always thought that bad things happen all the time
and we just tend to group them into threes.

One morning this summer upon waking,
I went to the sink to draw some water.
Not one drop of H2O.

My well pump had given up the ghost.
Because it happened at the beginning of a three day holiday,
I was looking at 72 hours of dehydration.

I have always been amazed by the photos of 
people in third world photos carrying water 
from a community well to their homes.

I have a new found appreciation for indoor plumbing.

I also learned that a gallon of water
will be used very quickly

I have also learned that when push comes to shove,
one CAN learn to carefully plan to be in the right place at the right time
when it involves trips to the facilities.

3 days later
and with significant cash exiting my bank account,
I had running water again.

All was “well” again…….
for 1 day.
That was, until I noticed water leaking from a utility closet.
That would be the utility closet that houses my hot water heater.

Calamity number 2.

One day later,
with a help of a garden hose, a wrench,
a trip to the local hot water heater store,
and a significant exit of cash from my bank account,
I was able to enjoy a hot shower.

That would be until I attempted to adjust the shower head
to wash the shampoo and soap from my eyes.

The neck of the shower head broke and smacked me on the head.
Water spewed everywhere except of course, except on my soap laden eyes.

Calamity number 3.

Now, I do not believe in polytheism.
That is, I do not believe in multiple gods.
if there was such a thing as a god of water,
that god was certainly not for me this week.

Because the soap rendered me momentarily blind,
I ran outside to the back of my home to access the garden hose.

Now I am not prone to exhibitionism.
But because I live in a very secluded rural area,
I had no concern running naked across my back yard.

As I began to wash the soap from my eyes
I heard a sound.
It is said that when you lose one of your sensory skills,
the others become more acute.
In my state of blindness, my now acute hearing recognized the sound.
It was the sound of a tractor,
the tractor of my neighboring farmer who was out in the adjoining fields.

There usually isn’t much humor in planting soybeans,
but on this day, Farmer Smith was grinning ear to ear.

Now, I do not believe in polytheism.
if there was such a thing as a god of embarrassing situations,
that god was certainly have a productive day.

When you are 40 feet from the closest towel,
and you finally have the soap removed from your eyes,
sometimes all you can do is wave and smile,
and be thankful that Farmer Smith does not carry a cell phone for photography.

Some days, some weeks just don’t go as planned,
at least the way we think they should go.

I may not be physically blind,
but I can often be spiritually blind.
One week during the summer,
I was reminded of how good my life is….

I don’t have to carry water daily to my home.
I can depend on hot water to meet my daily needs.
Each day, I can count on good vision to experience this world.

And yes, I can be available to cause a neighbor to smile.

We often dwell on what we don’t have
rather than being grateful for do have.

We often grumble when inconveniences arise,
rather than trusting that there is a bigger picture 
beyond the small details of our lives.

The apostle Paul,
who knew a great deal about “inconveniences” in his life,
had this to say to believers when things didn’t go their way….

“God causes ALL things to work together for good
to those who  love God, to those who are called
according to His purposes.”    Romans 8:28

Sometimes, we need to be blinded so that we can see.
Sometimes the small things keep us from seeing the big thing.
And at all times, God is faithful.

Bring on the next “bad” thing
I’ll just be sure to have a towel close by next time………….

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