The Dog Days of Summer

Under the hedge that grows beside my porch steps, Duchess, our “rent a dog” has dug her self a shelter from the scorching sun. She lays in the moist earth during the hottest part of the day, dozing till the shadows lengthen, and the smell of approaching evening, or supper cooking, draws her out.

My footsteps going up or down as I go in and out of the house barely warrants a raised eyebrow unless I have food. Her eye follows me, but there is no other movement besides her chest, rising and falling with her hot breath. My feet drag a little as I head out to the car, knowing that it will be like opening the door to an oven, and I’d rather crawl under it like an old dog lying under the porch to escape the stifling heat, than get in.

The Dog Days of summer are upon us; that stretch of hot and sultry weather that makes me feel lazy. I want to spend my days treading water in the pool, a cool drink in my hand. Instead, I’m roasting in my Chevy as I head out to make a home visit, thanking God the air conditioning is kicking in. I smile as I pass the church sign on the corner that reads, “You think it’s hot here!” (signed, God.)

Which got me to thinking of all the wonderful promises that God has made to us, his people, involving the blessings of water; cooling water. In Psalm 1:3, God promises that the ones who delight in his law shall be like trees planted by the rivers of water, that yield their fruit in its season. Their leaves will not wither, and they will prosper in all that they do. A vision of my pepper plants, wilting in the noon day heat comes to mind. I know that after a romp with the hose they will revive, and stand tall and proud again. So has God promised to revive us.

In Isaiah 35:6-7, God vows to save his people, and the land itself will reflect the glory of the Lord. God will make water gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert; burning sand will become a pool, and the thirsty ground bubbling springs. Walking wet from our baptisms, our lives, once dry as dust, now also reflect the glory of the Lord. The living water, provided by our Lord’s hand, becomes within us a spring of water gushing up to eternal life, and we will never be thirsty again. (John 4:14.)

The grueling heat shimmers on the pavement, sinks down through the roof of my car, but, I drive on, safe in the promises of living water. Tonight, I will revel in the coolness of moon shadow, relieved to know that this Dog Day heat is, indeed, temporary. One day, we will gather with the saints at the river of the water of life – that refreshing, abundant, never-ending water that flows from the throne of God, for eternity. (Rev. 22:1) Thanks be to God!

Dog Day Blessings!
Pastor Barb

Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the water…
Isaiah 55:1

Dog days of
summer heat licks my face
with soft tongue.

Languorous
afternoons spent in shade of
willow trees

drinking tea –
as evening comes, flaming
reds cool to

refreshing
blues and purples as the
sun beds down –

it doesn’t
get much better than this.

(c) 2009, Karla Dorman (6/18)

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