“If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.”
- Psalm 139:9-10
This summer, I spent two separate weeks beaching it up! One with my family and one with my wife’s family. Going to the beach is one of the most relaxing getaways for me. Something about the salty air, the bright sun, the feel of ocean winds, the sound of the crashing tides, and the horizon that seems to end in a slightly curved line so far out in the distance. It almost looks as though I can actually see the roundness of the Earth with my naked eyes.
The ocean draws and has drawn people for ages. Some people say that the ocean calls to them, much like mountain people might say that the mountains call to them. Oceans and mountains are two of the most God-evident places in creation. They are some of the easiest places to access yet least likely to be marred by the presence of human technology and tampering. Something about oceans and mountains seem to draw us closer to God, while at the same time instilling a sense of fear. Mountains and oceans are dangerous places! Thus the mixture of attraction and fear create what is called… Wonder.
It’s no mistake then that God is often rediscovered in these natural sacred spaces, because God too, is both attracting and something to fear. Beautiful… and terrible. When scripture speaks of the ―fear of the LORD, it is this strange feeling it’s talking about: Wonder. Where have you experienced wonder? Where have you seen the tension of beauty and terror?
Courtney and I came across a small decorative sign in one seaside shop that said, ―Mountain people are wise. Ocean people are happy. I don’t know whether that’s true or not, but I can see the competitive spirit that has sprung up around these two popular sentimental vacation spots. No wonder people get attached to them! These places point us to God. They fill us with wonder at the God of power and beauty!
“He who forms the mountains, who creates the wind, and who reveals his thoughts to humankind, who turns dawn to darkness, and treads on the heights of the earth—the LORD God Almighty is his name.” –Amos 4:13
Grace and peace, Pastor Andy
1 Annual Conference Sunday,
"Move In Our Midst"
8 Grandparent's Day,
"The Next Generation"
15 Meredith Barton speaking
22 Peace Day,
"Who Will You Make Peace With?"
29 Bethany Sunday, "All Things New"
Life Lessons :
9) Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.
10) Get rid of anything that isn’t
useful, beautiful, or joyful.
11) Forgive everyone—everything.