Thursday, March 20, 2008

Yellow Dust and Muddy Rain

In the northern part of the Houston area, we're just finishing the pine pollen season. You can't overlook it. The pine trees produce so much pollen that there's a fine greenish-yellow dust on the cars, on the sidewalks, on leaves of plants, on your shoes, and just about everywhere. People complain about their sinuses. The photo above, not retouched, is of pine pollen in the gutter after I hosed down our driveway.

On Tuesday night we had a different phenomenon. A rain-storm covered my car with tan spots of mud. I washed it (not very well), thinking that the dirt was from the construction zones near my work and near my home, but I've learned a different story. Our newspaper reports that it rained mud here. The mud was dirt and ash that blew from central Mexico; weather-watchers had seen it on satellite photos, beginning not far from Mexico City. This photo is of someone else's car window.

Are there any spiritual lessons here? I'm not sure, except that the dirty rain makes me think of the futility of man-made religion. We can wash ourselves every-which-way, but if our very methods of cleaning are dirty, we'll never get clean. I could have stood out in that rain and scrubbed my car, thinking I was cleaning it, but it would have done little or no good. It probably would have ended up dirtier than before.

The pine pollen reminds me of the pervasive effects of true believers. Not all of the trees here are pines, and not all of the land is forested, but there's no escaping the pines' influence. In the same way, a true Christian is salt and light, impacting the world around.


Joyce said...

These are very interesting analogies! I especially like thinking about the pollen. Here, that would be corn pollen in June!

Jim Swindle said...

I lived in Illinois for many years. I don't recall ever seeing the corn pollen, but do remember sneezing at it. The fields of corn can be beautiful.