My daughter remarks that she wants to research swamps because nobody really likes them and developers destroy them to their own peril. As a family, we remain fascinated by whatever one rejects at face value that could, in fact, become a moment of flair.
I learn again that swamps are good. Swamps serve us. They provide flood control, broad habitats for breeding and protection of fish and wildlife, and a vital ability to purify water. Swamps capture what harms surrounding lands and water. Swamps are sponges that absorb the unwanted chemicals and organic waste to protect nearby streams and rivers. They strengthen and cleanse their surroundings in such supportive and beautiful ways.
|Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
Ekem [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
But often we interpret the swamp as ugly, unproductive, useless, unfruitful space. We fret about removing or developing this worthless area, not realizing what we’re doing.
I reinterpret the swampy places in my own heart and think about the succession of swampy days. Yes, I fret about anything that seems useless, unproductive, or ugly. Remove this! Develop it now into something better and useful! But no–what if I paused and considered what this day is purifying in me, how it’s strengthening me, and how it does a cleansing work?
I’m thankful for swampy days that nobody like and everyone wants to end. Perhaps these days absorb something in me to protect and allow for more and more flourishing.