As I write this we are mopping our brows in a heat wave. How the weathermen love these moments when they dig up temperature records from years ago and tell us which ones we will or will not break before it ends. If it happens, they exult. If it doesn’t, they never apologize or refer to it again. What a job!!
The one consolation, we tell ourselves, is that we are mid-August and it will not last. This time of year moves at its own pace, as the stores attempt to motivate us by back-to-school sales and we wonder if our bathing suits will last for the few swims that are still left. I think even the children’s voices have a new cadence as they scream their way through the little time they have left before the classrooms claim them again.
I love the contrast between the dire events of the nightly news I have just clicked off and what I see outside my window. Yes, there are wars and fires, disasters and accidents, but a very large extended family is having a picnic in the oval of my apartment complex in Kingston.
Each summer the management brings out a few picnic tables and grills, and anyone is free to have a gathering there. Tonight it is obviously an extended family, ranging from Grandma in her lawn chair to the infant in a high chair banging a spoon on his tray. The smell of burgers has reached him!
Someone has brought a bouquet for the center of one table and while two men are managing the grills, the older children are chasing the younger with the kind of familial joy that only comes when a teenage cousin roars as he “traps” a two year old . It is all so remote from what I have just seen as “news”.
I thought of Jesus at a bigger hillside picnic where there must have been grandmas and children, and I know those little ones did not sit quietly still until it was time to eat. Can you see them chasing each other around the edges of the crowd? And what do you see as the expression of Jesus’ face?
Take Him with you as you go through these last days of summer. And may you both enjoy every minute with the gusto of those little ones outside my window. Life is for living!