There is a calm, quiet river that flows past an old green-roofed chapel outside the town of Abingdon. An ancient tree grows from the bank, extending far over the cool waters – an excellent place for someone to climb out, relax, and ponder the day. Maybe cast a line in, see what you can catch. Little fishies gather beneath the outreached branches, scrambling for the tiny bugs that fall from the leaves, while the larger fish swim in the deep. The sun hits the water, the trees provide a cooling shade, and the occasional gnat buzzes in your ear. It’s a beautiful, natural, pleasant scene.
The white chapel, practically a century old, sits upon a slight hill, it’s empty bell-tower reaching into the summer sky. The quiet, calm river flows softly by. Examining the tree that reaches out over the waters and you’ll see evidence of many feet that have climbed out onto its trunk, full of excitement, preparing to leap out, falling through the air, splashing into the waters below.
Summer came this year – but the rain didn’t. The river, day by day, grew smaller and smaller. And as the waters flowed away and the heat evaporated it into the sky and refused to return it, the large river grew shallow. The flowing waters became slower and shallow, nearing stagnancy.