"But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture.” (Malachi 4:2, NLT)
As the world around us begins its yearly cycle of new life, nourishment and growth; we see and sense the evidence of that reality around us. Tiny leaves come out of swollen buds while finches and wrens gather bits of grass and twigs weaving and fashioning nests to shelter their young. In the pastures growing greener each day, young calves frolic in the lushness of the hillsides. People bask and linger in the warmth of the sunshine as they spend more and more time outdoors.
Some people are busy walking as if they discovered something new and completely unique, while others are digging in the earth as if there is gold under the rich humus in their gardens and fields. They gold they are seeking, will not be found in the form of a precious metal notoriety but in the anticipation of the production and growth from the spring and summer seasons. The richness from the gold they are seeking will come later. The gold will come in the vibrant and intense color of mature marigolds in full bloom. It will come as the calves stand more squarely and stocky in a golden sunset. It will come as wagons overflowing with golden corn are being emptied in the fall harvest. It will come in our personal and spiritual lives as well. It will come as friendships are fostered through nourishing and bonding moments together this season. It will come as eternal gold, as our faith develops as grow in the teaching and love of our heavenly Father.
Seasons are part of all life and the changes and growth inherent in all of them will bring life. Seasonal rhythms have always brought life, as noted thousands of years ago by the writer of Ecclesiastes (3:1-8). The sowing of seed and its nourishment and care, have always been essential to all life, including all spiritual growth and life. Jesus speaks of this through his parables describing the sowing, the needs of sustenance, the interfering draining enemies to growth such as excessive heat, weeds and poor soil in the nourishing and harvesting phases of all life (Luke 8:5-15). There is a beauty in each lily that is difficult to describe and it flows from the provision of God in the nourishment He gives (Mt. 5:28-30). As we find joy in our relationship with God, a far greater beauty than any flower will the product and result of His provision, nourishment and shaping of our lives.
Eventually there will be a harvest from every season of our lives. What will be the result of the season before us? Will the harvest of from this season, be bright and colorful with the glory of God? Will the harvest be of the gold of this world or will it convey a richness of golden color from the goodness of God as He molds and changes our hearts as we grow in our relationship with Him?
I offer to each of you, a summer blessing. May God bless your sowing of new life in His word this summer! May the Holy Spirit nourish your faith richly in the warmth of the true Son, the source of light and life (John 1:4). May you not tire of doing good (Gal. 6:9-10) and may the gold that you harvest after this summer season be not of the perishable nature but of the nature of Christ (1 Peter 1:17-20). Amen.