I don’t always understand where kindness comes from.
I’ve seen it in action. I understand it when I see it…but I don’t always comprehend what leads people to express it.
In some of the books I’ve read about the West, they talk about flash floods filling up an arroyo…a stream bed that’s usually empty of water. It’s a surprise when a barren creek bed gets filled by something as unexpected in the desert as a lot of water coming fast.
Unexpected rain, coming hard and strong…droplets separate and distinct…join on dry ground to become, at least for a little while…until the next dry spell…a river that covers and carries.
In the moment, these separate acts of kindness mean a great deal.
Later, when we get see the big picture, they mean even more.
We get caught up in arguments about the correct way to baptize….” IMMERSION !!! SPRINKLE !! “…we argue back and forth…each supporting their views with scripture and well rehearsed theology.
I wonder if either one isn’t just a reminder of the deluge to come?
I wonder if, when we get to the end of our lives, God won’t be waiting for us to say, “you did pretty well…you really tried and really did do the best you could…but you know something? I sent you to be a drop in a raging river and the best you could do was try and stay moist all by yourself on a hot sidewalk. Now…it’s not your fault…you didn’t know any better…but don’t you think it would have been easier and more effective if you could have just loved everybody…and joined together to flow on and cover the world?”
Or something like that. I really don’t know what God would say to any of us.
I guess some of us are willing to hold our hand out and say, “Feel the rain? Doesn’t it feel wonderful?”
Others just want to spray everyone down hard with a fire hose.
I guess it’s more appealing to be a powerful fire hose than it is to be a single drop among many.
There are a lot of thirsty people. There are a lot of people who just need a drink of water…no theology, no preaching…just a drink of water.
God’s kindness is bigger than any “river” we could ever hope to understand. It’s a quiet and constant collection of droplets getting ready to fill the “arroyo”.