“Cursed is the strong one who depends on mere humans, Who thinks he can make it on muscle alone and sets God aside as dead weight. He’s like a tumbleweed on the prairie, out of touch with the good earth. He lives rootless and aimless in a land where nothing grows.”– Jeremiah 17: 5-6 (The Message)
In the dry breath choking air, a tumbleweed blows aimlessly across the prairies. It never fails that the tumbleweed gets in the way blowing across the highway or through the fields. The tumbleweed is thirsting for water and life. Growing up on the prairies of ND, I have seen my fair share of tumbleweeds aimlessly blowing across the land. They are more of a nuisance then anything else.
“But blessed is the man who trusts me, God, the woman who sticks with God. They’re like trees replanted in Eden, putting down roots near the rivers—Never a worry through the hottest of summers, never dropping a leaf, Serene and calm through droughts,bearing fresh fruit every season.”–Jeremiah 17: 7-8 (The Message)
Aimless tumbleweeds are a sure sign that the air and land are dry thirsting deeply for water to quench their thirst. In summers like this, one fervently must pray for God to send rain to water the land. As a farmer’s daughter, granddaughter, and niece, I have seen the lines of worry across my family’s faces as they wait for that rain to come. In moments like these, it is incredibly hard to trust in God, but it is exactly what we are called to do; to trust that the rains will come. Or that certain crops will still bear fruit even in the midst of an arid summer.
“The heart is hopelessly dark and deceitful, a puzzle that no one can figure out. But I, God, search the heart and examine the mind. I get to the heart of the human. I get to the root of things. I treat them as they really are not as they pretend to be.”–Jeremiah 17:9-10 (The Message)
In the midst of our own uncertainty, it seems it is so easy for the world to turn to other idols. Yet the truth is that God searches our hearts and examines our minds to get to the very heart of each of us. Lent is a time for us to examine our minds and to search our hearts too. Even in our brokenness, God transforms us; making, in the words of Gungor, “beautiful things out of us.”
Yes, sometimes we will wander aimlessly like tumbleweeds. But God always directs us back to the very heart of who God calls us to be. Are we willing to let God truly see who we are; with all of our flaws and imperfections knowing that even with those flaws and imperfections, we are “fearfully and wonderfully made.” And as a result, God calls us to search our hearts and examine our minds to love all God’s people.