Nikon D70s, 1/250 sec, f8, ISO 200, 105mm equivalent (Bigger)
"Hope is anticipation of good not yet here, or as yet unseen."
(Dallas Willard, Renovation of the Heart)
Some years ago a sociologist accompanied a group of mountain climbers on an expedition. Among other things, he noticed a distinct correlation betwen clound cover and contentment. When there was no cloud cover and the peak was in view, the climbers were energetic and cooperative. When the grey clouds eclipsed the view of the mountaintop, though, the climbers were sullen and selfish.
The same thing happens to us. As long as our eyes are on his [that is God's] majesty there is a bounce in our step. But let our eyes focus on the dirt beneath us and we will grumble about every rock and crevice we have to cross.
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Oh, let me see Thy footmarks,We sung it in church yesterday and it went very well as an accompanyment to the reading (Jesus' temptation in the wilderness from Luke 4). I love the powerful imagery of looking for the Lord's footprints and putting my own inside them. I remember as a child trying to put my feet into my father's footprints in the sand at the seashore. The strides were just too big and so each one was an enourmous leap. Eventually though as one grows up it becomes easier to follow.
And in them plant mine own;
My hope to follow duly
Is in Thy strength alone.
Oh, guide me, call me, draw me,
Uphold me to the end;
And then to rest receive me,
My Saviour and my Friend.
"We are all mere beggars telling other beggars where to find bread."That's certainly the way I feel, like a beggar - who am I to tell people about Jesus?! Looking at the readings for Ash Wednesday (especially the one from 2 Corinthians 5), I am staggered anew at why God uses us as "ambassadors" for Christ. I think we'd probably agree that most of the time we do not represent our country very well and the mantle of a beggar seems more appropriate.
Then Jesus declared, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. (John 6:35)
I'm not the only one starin' at the sunPerhaps not one of Bono's jolliest lyrics! In an attempt to get some insight into these words I found lots of discussion on the internet, specifically here. Some think that it's a comment on society, how people are happy to be blind to the reality of the mess that this world is in, others think that it's a reference to a group of hippies who whilst stoned on LSD stared at the sun until they went blind. Another theory relates to Plato's famous cave, you know how humans are trapped in a cave staring at the light only from a fire which they think is the real light but then one of them (the philosopher) is set free, his enlightenment happens and he turns around and sees the real sun outside. Of course the light is blinding at first but then he realizes that what he is seeing is real and what he saw before were only shadows.
afraid of what you'd find if you took a look inside
not just deaf and dumb I'm staring at the sun
not the only one who's happy to go blind.
"...he climbed the mountain to pray, taking Peter, John, and James along. While he was in prayer, the appearance of his face changed and his clothes became blinding white. At once two men were there talking with him. They turned out to be Moses and Elijah—and what a glorious appearance they made!" (from Luke 9 The Message)And a prayer:
Jesus Christ is the light of the world,Amen.
the light no darkness can overcome.
Stay with us, Lord, for it is evening,
and the day is almost over.
Let your light scatter the darkness
and illumine your people.