Summer Heat Lightning - Encouragement Café - July 24

Summer Heat Lightning
 By Joan Walker Hahn

His lightning lights up the world; the earth sees and trembles.  ... The heavens proclaim his righteousness, and all peoples see his glory. Psalm 97:4, 6 NIV

I really enjoy the summer.  I like the longer days.  I enjoy fresh vegetables and fruits.  I love seeing hummingbirds drink from my flowers and the hummingbird feeder in the yard.  The only drawback to summer is the heat – and mosquitoes.

There is an area of woods behind our house that is conducive for mosquitoes.  Anytime we are outside, we can expect to fight the pests.  Bug spray is always readily at hand if needed for longer stays outside.  And even though we can ward off that enemy, we can’t do a lot about the heat. 

After the sun goes down, we often see heat lightning.  All my life I have heard of and seen heat lightning and was told it was lightning caused simply by the heat of the day.  I always found it interesting and thought of it as God’s fireworks. 

I had this devotion all thought out in my mind about how heat lightning was a representation of God.  When we are enduring the heat in our lives spiritually, God is there with us.

I finally looked up one day to read what heat lightning actually is.  When I read that it’s not real lightning at all, that kind of blew up the devotion I had in mind. 

Except maybe it didn’t.  The light we are seeing is actually a reflection of the lightning off of the clouds in a storm up to a hundred miles away.  We don’t realize it’s from a storm because we normally do not hear the thunder from that storm since it’s so far away.  Yet the light from the lightning is so bright, it’s possible to see it.

We can’t see the storm.  We can’t hear the thunder.  But we can still see the lightning. 

Many times we go through really rough storms in life.  During those moments, I cling diligently to God’s Hand.  Sometimes we experience times of great victories and see God working in mighty ways.  It’s easy then to praise God for His awesomeness.

But at other times, we are in neither a storm or on a mountain-top high.  Just normal, ho-hum days.  The days may be uncomfortable, like the heat of a summer day, but not unbearable. 

But remember that an atmosphere of normalcy is a perfect time for pesky Satan to annoy us.  And like me using that can of bug spray, we can fend him off with the Word of God. 

I think it’s on these normal days that it’s important to remember we are still called to be a reflection of Christ.  Some people are struggling in the heat, spiritually speaking. 

We can reflect God to them as we tend to our day to day duties.  As we go to our places of work, or tend to our gardens, or take care of chores around home, we can still reflect His love to those living in a dark world.  We can still speak from grateful hearts of the bounty He provides.

We don’t always have to be the blinding lightning accompanied by thunder, bringing attention to God.  We can be that reflective light in the sky to the eyes of those looking out from a dark world. 

We can be a quiet example of God’s love.  We can still make an impression on those who are searching for something.  We just have to remember, it’s not us.  We are just reflecting the Light of the World.  

Heavenly Father, Thank You for the long days of summer.  We know sometimes there are storms we have to go through that allow us to cling tightly to You.  But during these so-called normal days free from storms, may we not fall away from You. May we remember that we are to be a reflection of Your love continually.  And when we are around those who are living in darkness, may Your light shine through us so that they may be drawn to You.  In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen. 

For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.  Matthew 24:27 NIV

© 2021 by Joan Walker Hahn.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Monday, 24 July 2023.