Love to pray. Feel often during the day the need for prayer, and take trouble to pray. Prayer enlarges the heart until it is capable of containing God's gift of himself. Ask and seek, and your heart will grow big enough to receive him and keep him as your own.
In Knoxville this summer it has been a wet one. In fact, the rainfall total for the summer thus far is 20.06 inches. That's a lot of rain! Especially when you compare it to the average for the entire summer of 11.64. In June alone we had 10.26 inches, compared to the average of 4.04. Needless to say, it seems like it's been raining all summer long. The silver lining is that I can count on one hand the number of times I've had to water my garden.
As I shared in the fall, (In This Post), I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed. Last spring when I was building a flower bed in my back yard, I thought through everything in great detail...just about. The one thing I didn't think about was that the location I planted my garden in was no where near any sort of water supply. And last summer was nowhere near like this summer. Last summer we were famine for water rather than feast--we had a bit off a drought you might say. So, last summer I had to carry bucket, after bucket, after bucket, of water to my little flower garden just to keep things even close to being alive.
Well this year is a whole different story, and in that respect I am grateful. It made me think back to the whole idea of prayer again. How some seasons prayer flows so easily, seeming like rain from above, a gift of overflowing abundance. And some seasons prayer is much more difficult, requiring a great deal of effort, and endurance, and perseverance. Teresa of Avila wrote a lot about this centuries ago (again, see This Post).
For most of this summer, my prayer hasn't exactly matched up with this rainy season we've been having here in Knoxville (rain is good in this metaphor:). It has been mundane, scattered, and sporadic, and if the truth be known...work. And that is not a bad thing, it is living a particular season and remaining faithful in spite of the conditions; it just seems like I've been carrying the bucket to the creek a lot to draw water. But in the last few weeks, the skies have opened up, it seems. And the rain has been pouring down from above...or within...I'm not sure which. Possibly it has been both. And I am extraordinarily grateful. So, even though I'd like to have a little less rain in the month of August for recreational purposes, my garden, and my soul, hopes it just keeps on raining.