Beth Urech Lenten devotional for April 7, 2022

When agreeing to write a week’s worth of devotionals for the Lenten Season 2022, I knew I wanted to start at a river.

Not just any river, but the Gallinas River that runs right through Las Vegas and which I’d be more apt to call a creek or stream. But the locals call it a river, and so do I.

I walk the river path from Highlands Recycling Center down to the feed mill several times a week, and it’s my place to meditate and contemplate and to create. In fact, I’ve composed three songs along the riverbanks. 

I encourage you to take my devotionals to a spot along the Gallinas. Let the babbling, shimmering waters inspire you. Sooth you. Energize you.

Devotional #1:
As you read Langston Hughes, “The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” can you sense the sorrow and inexplicable sadness but also the strength that comes from cultivating a deep soul?  

I’ve known rivers:

I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older
   than the flow of human blood in human veins

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.
I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.
I looked upon the Nile and raised pyramids above it.

I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln
     went down to New Orleans, and I’ve seen its
     muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset.

I’ve known rivers:
Ancient, dusky rivers.
My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

Dear God, As we marvel at the enormity and grandeur of our world – let us give thanks for the flowing water that nourishes us, that engages us, that saves our souls.  Amen.