From Up High
Recently, I had the pleasure of taking a few days off from work to visit some friends of mine that live in Texas. It was my first time on an airplane in what seems like a long while. Every time I fly, I love to look out the window of the plane. From the air, all the cities, the houses, the roads appear to be so tidy. Everything has it's proper place. It reminds me of a playset. My favorite part of flying is looking at the city lights below against the black sky. It never fails to get me feeling all whimsical and dreamy. It is a beautiful sight to gaze at the world below from so high up. Then there is the landing. As you get closer to landing on solid ground, you begin to see that what looked so orderly and picturesque from the air is a little more messy than what you imagined. You can see the dirt, the filth and the grime. You can see the places where there is litter left on the ground, graffiti spray painted on the side of the buildings, and the paint that needs to be touched up. You begin to see broken people in a swirl of confusion and activity just trying to make it from one day to the next.
This time around, my flight taught me something about God, His love and His infinite grace. You see God has the advantage of being able to see things from up high. He sees it all and He knows it all. What you see as a mess, He sees as ordered steps, leading you to His purposes for your life, as you look to Him. From His perspective, all the parts and pieces of our lives are fitted to His plan. Even the things that we mess up, He is able to work out for our good. From His viewpoint, it is easy to see how all things are held together in Him.
But God doesn't remain up high. This is the beauty of grace. Jesus makes the landing right into the center of our mess. He sees the dirt and the grime and is not intimidated by it. He takes us by the hand and walks us through the details. He is with us through messy times. He whispers into our ears and into our hearts messages of His hope and mercy. This is what the Gospel is all about. When the world was separated from God by wickedness and sin, Jesus took it upon Himself to enter the scene. He made a way where there was no way. He bore the load of guilt and shame, as He hung on the cross, so that we could experience freedom and life and relationship with the Father once again. Jesus made it possible for us to overcome our daily troubles and difficulties and to tap into the vantage point that comes from faith. The more we tap into faith and trust in God, the easier it becomes to see things from God's perspective. The more we gaze on Jesus, the more evident God's plans and purposes become in our lives, even in the face of a mess.