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Keep your eyes open as, one by one, there are little faith oases that start opening back up

CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Holly McLaneAfter watching the farmers toil in their dusty dry fields in late winter, I always feel a sense of relief on the day that the water appears in the irrigation canals. Swollen and swift, the ditches that were, minutes before, nothing more than a good-for-nothing gully, are now delivering life-giving water to hundreds of square miles of land and cattle. It's a mini-miracle to watch the dry and tired land drink deep and thirst no more.

Once the chains come off the headgates, there's living water on the move, each river branching off to feed the smaller channels that snake their way through the Central Oregon desert landscape until everyone's had their fill. The landowner has only to open his or her gate to receive the free flow. After that, in just a matter of days, the parched fields explode to green, demonstrating that new beginnings are possible, even if there's been a long winter's wait. 

And so, it goes with God. However, His love is always on the move, and the doors are never barred.

In times of disappointment, discouragement, or even death, we can feel as parched in our being as the dry grass that crunches beneath our feet. We can drink from the tap of distraction or dip into the well of escapism or the bottomless pit of instant gratification, but no matter how much we swallow, we never feel satisfied.

Might I offer another solution? Because if you happen to taste a drop from this pitcher of truth, you may, if faintly at first, realize you can hardly bear the hope offered by what it is you are thirsting for. The Holy Scriptures are crystal clear on this matter of thirst. John 7:37-38 essentially tells us that "streams of living water will fill and brim and overflow from anyone who comes to God when overwhelmed." Did you catch that? It does not say for anyone who comes to God when they have their lives put together or their bad habits under control. It says, "when overwhelmed."

Certain circumstances have made this winter seem a lot longer than it needed to be. But keep your eyes open as, one by one, little faith oases start opening back up. There's a church on every corner and plenty more on the world-wide-web, and they all offer gushers of comfort and peace - whether your cup is empty or overflowing.


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