Friday, June 15, 2012

Everybody Duck!

Like a duck in the water, that's what I was thinking as kids sloshed down the slip-n-slide.  Today was the last day of Vacation Bible School and this, along with a picnic, was the after event.   I know.  I might be prejudiced having roots from soggy wet Oregon, the land of the ducks, but really, there's a spiritual application here and one of my favorite illustrations.
I love the Psalms of Ascent and have come across them once again in my personal Bible study.  But one Psalm that never made much sense to me was Psalm 133.  It speaks of oil being poured on the head and then running down onto the beard of Aaron, the priest.  Then it runs down on the collar of his robes.  It actually sounds kind of icky and messy to me.  And what, pray tell, does it mean?

But as I've come across oil in other places in Scripture, I see that it often represents the Holy Spirit and His work in our lives.  There was Elisha and the widow with her sons who received more and more oil for their provision, as many jars as they could fill.  And whenever a king was chosen, he was anointed with oil.  The oil in the lamp of the temple continued day and night and never ran dry. Each of these incidences studied in detail are rich and full with meaning, especially as they relate to the Holy Spirit.

When there are fights in the household there is friction, strife, and soured relationships.  This is common to most of us and so sibling rivalry is a popular topic.  Any mom can tell you that peace in the house is worth millions.  My oldest daughter has it figured out just right.  She will be leaving for college at the same time her sister starts middle school.  So she will not be home much for the middle school years of her younger sisters.  Whew!  She sighs with relief.

If peace is so desirable in our homes, how much more so in the household of God!  As my church has just completed a week of VBS, I am amazed at the teamwork required, like a well oiled machine.  Each part contributing to the whole, and as an onlooker this year all I can say is wow!  You all have done a great job!  Thank you for giving your life and time for the sake of a child, precious in the sight of God.
 The body of Christ, hard at work, rubbing shoulders with one another, also reminds me of a duck.   The water surrounds the duck continually but is no big deal, not even an issue, because of the oil in its feathers.   Likewise, when we have friction with one another we need to let it slide right off our backs.  We cannot let it soak in or take it to heart.  And the more we live by the Spirit of God, the more that oil can be worked into our feathers and the less they will be ruffled.   We then thrive in our immersion with other believers as we live in the presence and power of the Holy Spirit.
Psalm 133 begins with that thought, "How good and pleasant it is when brothers [and sisters] live together in unity!  It is like precious oil poured on the head..."  And it ends with "...the dew...falling on Mt. Zion.  For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore."  Dew is such a gentle, ideal form of watering the earth.  And how refreshing is the unity of believers, peace in the household of God.

As our church prepares for the next close encounter with one another, a missions trip to the Apaches of Arizona, where there will be uncomfortable conditions and tight spaces, I'm reminded of the oil of the Spirit which needs to permeate our being so we might know the refreshing dew of heaven.  Everybody duck!

1 comment:

  1. A powerful truth playfully, yet reverently, done ... thanks for the wonderful visual! I, too, was amazed and thankful for the ease with which our Pilots worked together - what a blessing!