“I bought a cactus. A week later it died. And I got depressed, because I thought, ‘Damn. I am less nurturing than a desert.’ “
– Demetri Martin, New York Magazine, October 3, 2005

OuchI just returned from a trip to Arizona. In that great land, where the cactus milk flows like honey, I realized that the glory of God was evident in the harsh, dry conditions of the desert, just like it is in the moist greenery of the Smoky Mountains. It was the first time I have been there, and I was caught off guard by the beauty. Glory covered the land in that dry, overheated region.

One evening, we ventured to the edge of the Sonoran Desert and saw a sunset that silenced us by its splendor. The sky was a tapestry of orange, blue, and yellow as the sun reflected off the thin evening clouds. Maybe the image was meant to remain only in my memory–I failed to bring a camera.

Somehow, the sparce plant life there finds nourishment in the sandy soil. I bought a small cactus back for Krista and the instructions say to water it with a few teaspoons of water once a month. It’s a survivor, for sure.

Psalm 19 announces that “the heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” This is no less true in the land of lizards, cacti, and rattlesnakes.


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