Planning on Streams in the Desert
A devotional thought from Psalm 126:1–6
1 When the Lord turned again the captivity of Zion,
We were like them that dream.
2 Then was our mouth filled with laughter,
And our tongue with singing:
Then said they among the heathen,
The Lord hath done great things for them.
3 The Lord hath done great things for us;
Whereof we are glad.
4 Turn again our captivity, O Lord,
As the streams in the south.
5 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.
6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed,
Shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him. (Psalm 126:1–6)
Do you know anything about seasons of drought? Don’t misunderstand, I don’t mean a literal lack of water but figuratively a lack of apparent blessing. Are you enduring a tough time that seems to never end? Have you been working with no results to show for all of your labour? Have you been thinking, “does God have some encouragement for me?” He does! Whether your struggle is due to external circumstances that you can no longer control or an internal dryness of soul, there is a blessing for you in today’s reading from God’s precious Word.
Psalm 126:4 Turn again our captivity, O Lord,
As the streams in the south.
The southern area referenced in this Psalm is a place known for it’s dryness, yet streams of fresh water do come and give life to this desert place. There are streams, even in the desert. They say these streams can come suddenly and seemingly out of nowhere. These streams explain the next passage.
They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed,
Shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
For just a moment, imagine a farmer laboring in a dry, dusty desert. To the uneducated onlooker this dude looks dumb. He is working for a harvest in a place where no crop could possibly grow. Suppose for a few seconds that we approach him and ask what in the world he is hoping to accomplish. We ask, “What are you doing?” And he says, “I am sowing seed.”
We can’t conceal our contempt as we say, “Ok, old McDonald, why are you sowing seed in a desert?” He responds, “I am getting ready for a harvest, dummy!”
“Why are you digging in the desert? It’s a desert duh!” I think my mocking question is a good one but he doesn’t. He barks back the answer, “Irrigation system, DUH”.
Then the thunder crashes in the distance, lighting strikes in a very distant sky. Rain in another place, a higher place accumulates and comes down from the mountains as a stream in the desert. The water from on high brings life where there was none, fruit is possible where before it wasn’t. That farmer put an irrigation system in place because he planned on a stream in the desert. He planted seeds in anticipation of a stream in the desert. Seeds are planted and a crop is coming because he had faith in a stream in the desert.
What does that mean to you and I?
God has ordained that dry times will come in our situations and in our service. He allows these droughts to test and grow our faith. By Faith in his word and his loving character we would be wise to plan on a stream in the desert. Laborer keep laboring, struggling saint keep enduring, any moment the blessings of God could come from that higher place and bring that sweet life giving mercy for which you have been planning and praying. Don’t forget, he has a way of sending unexpected streams into dry and dusty desert places.