34 “But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap. 35 For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36 But stay awake at all times,praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:34-36)
In Matthew Henry’s Complete Commentary on the Bible, the author expands on these verses, explaining the danger of losing spiritual focus. He writes that physical distractions “make men dull and lifeless to their duty, dead and listless in their duty they stupify the conscience, and cause the mind to be unaffected with those things that are most affecting.”
In geology, a meander is a river or stream defined by broad, semicircular curves that occur as the river erodes the outer bank and deposits silt on the inner bank. In Sedimentary Geology, the authors write, “The relatively straight braided channels become more sinuous as they get farther from the source uplands until the fully sinuous meandering system is established.”
As a meander’s u-shaped curves become more and more extreme, the neck of land in between curves becomes increasingly more narrow. Sometimes, in times of storms or extreme erosion and flooding, the land in between curves is breached by a fast flow of water, causing the bypassed curve to become completely isolated. If flooding or marshy vegetation takes over the inside area, an oxbow lake is formed.
Just like a meander, our spiritual energy can become sluggish and lose direction if we stray from our true source. After a period of time being distracted and lacking a close connection to God, a particularly difficult trial can easily cause us to become isolated, no longer contributing to our ultimate goal, but taking away from it, making us spiritually stagnant. Staying alert, aware, energized, and close to the source is necessary for our spiritual well-being.