He shall come down like showers...

Psalm 72:6 He shall come down like rain upon the mown field, like showers that water the earth.

During the summer in the South, things can get mighty dry. The heat goes up, and the sun stays high; the grass gets brown, and dusty patches show up on a lawn that was so green just a few weeks ago. This time of year is often the beginning of a long, hot summer.

Psalm 72 sings the praises of the ideal king, one who rules with justice and cares for the poor, who delivers the oppressed and pities the needy. Such a ruler would be like rain watering the earth, bringing refreshment, and life itself to a land thirsting for nourishment.

We in the United States are not into kings, but we certainly have plenty of leaders. We have leaders in our national government, in our states, and in our localities. We have leaders in our churches and in our denominations. We may not have a king, but we have lots of leaders.

My prayer for today is that leaders of all kinds take seriously the call to give life and nurture to their people who are so thirsty and dried out.