The Gulch in the Heart

Out here in Colorado, you learn the definition of gulch. In fact, you learn about gullies, gorges, ravines, canyons, and valleys. Yes, gulch can mean to greedily gulp something down your throat, but it technically refers to a deep ravine that marks the course of a stream or torrent.

It’s a holding place, a deep cut into the earth that’s made for water. The gulch quickly fills up with a deluge of rain, but normally, the gulch is just a dry creek bed.

There the gulch sits all marked out for rushing water to course through it.

I take in the gulches as I drive across the landscape, and I think about the erosion that cuts deep, sorrowful valleys into the soul–just by the work of living, of growing up, and of all the ways a heart can break.

I see the empty valley, and I know this: When the water comes–and it must–the groove has been cut to contain it and direct it where it’s going to go and to experience that water’s flow. 

I think of Jesus’ promise of Living Water that springs up within us. I think of what’s in place to contain it and direct it. I remember the gulch that’s waiting for it, cut there by design, to hold something true and beautiful.

With every deep cut into the heart, the Living Water courses.


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