The Upper Room Devotion for Monday, July 31, 2023, was written by Allison Lynn of Ontario, Canada.
8 The voice of my beloved! Look, he comes, leaping upon the mountains, bounding over the hills. 9 My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Look, there he stands behind our wall, gazing in at the windows, looking through the lattice. 10 My beloved speaks and says to me: “Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away; 11 for now the winter is past, the rain is over and gone. 12 The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come,
and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. 13 The fig tree puts forth its figs, and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.
Song of Solomon 2:8-13 NRSV
It felt like winter had lasted all year. I was tired of salting the sidewalk, drying out wet boots, and scraping the car windows. My mood reflected the dark, short days. I needed a change, a sign of hope. As I trudged up the icy walkway to my front door, I noticed a tiny speck of green. It was tucked up against the side of the house where the snow had melted from the warmth of the foundation. There, growing out of the moist earth, was the tiny tip of a snowdrop - a white flower that signals the coming of spring.
Today's verse from Song of Solomon rang through my head like a melody. This was my sign of hope. Just as God had promised, new life was returning. Although it wasn't a full-blown vision of spring, it was a start. That small flower reminded me that God will do the same thing in me if I am open to it. God provides all that we need for seeds of faith planted years ago to take root in our lives. At the proper time they will grow.
Small signs of hope can make all the difference to us as we attempt to persevere amidst our trials and struggles. Yet, what is of greater impact are the signs of hope we offer to others. God desires to partner with us to encourage and comfort others, as we ourselves have been encouraged and comforted. I invite you to be a blessing to someone today, with a word of hope-filled encouragement.
Loving God, help us to remember the promises you've planted in our hearts. We trust in you as our true foundation. Amen.