A Refreshing Change is in the Air

September 23 was the autumnal equinox. For us Phoenicians, the change from summer to fall usually feels like summer to more summer. September is supposed to bring a change in the weather, but usually the weather change is only felt by those who are awake at 3:00 a.m.. This year, however, was different. On September 22, everyone in Phoenix went to bed in summer and woke up in fall.

We all woke up to clouds that covered and cooled this vast, concrete city. Cool, misty breezes swirled around our dried-out, sunburned skin. Gentle rain washed and revived our parched land. And we all took deep breaths of clean, fresh air into our dusty lungs. Now it is Thursday and we are still basking in the refreshing shift in the atmosphere.

Last night I was at my daughter's soccer practice. Standing in the middle of the large field of grass made it possible to notice the vastness of the sky above. The waning sun was pouring out a soft light instead of giving off heat, and the colors of the sky were marvelous. There were many patches of bulky clouds slowly passing overhead, bringing constant change to the imagery all around us. At one point, one of the bulky patches of clouds released a blanket of soft rain over everyone.

I stood next to one of my daughter's coaches, who is from England. I jokingly asked him if he ever played much football in the rain. He smiled and laughed. He then told me that on Monday night when the heavy downpour came, he was sitting in his back garden, soaking it up. He told me he felt like the guy from “Shawshank Redemption” who, after nineteen years of prison life, escaped from prison during a heavy rainstorm. As he crawled out of a tunnel, he stood up, took off his shirt, and soaked up the moment in sheer ecstasy, freedom and cleansing. It is a great moment in cinema, but it also made me wonder if the Brit next to me had escaped prison or something. 😂

What I want to leave you with are some words from a songwriter named John Lucas. This song is called “Hope” and it is worth listening to; but since you are probably already trying to rush through this blog, I will give you the lyrics. Let them wash over your soul and fill up your mind. Though we are imprisoned in this broken world and weighed down by sin's curse, this is not our destiny. We are headed for freedom forevermore.

I feel the earth trembling under my feet
I feel the waters churning, rising from the deep
I know the trees are swaying with their family's seeds
And I feel the harvest returning, no more dust and weeds

I've seen fathers running for their prodigal sons
And I've seen the nooses empty and the chains undone
I've seen beggars leaving their crumbs of bread
And I've seen orphans dancing with crowns on their heads

And I hear the King whistling through the trees
To meet Him at the sea, all the murderers and thieves
And there amongst the tide and all the judges of the land
He will wash every foot and take His children by the hand

Alleluia. May God’s marvelous plan and Jesus' majestic love sustain you in your battles today.