What Do You See Beyond the Fog?
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We don't yet see things clearly. We're squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won't be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We'll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!
I Corinthians 13:12 (The Message)
I'm not a great traveler. While some people look forward to packing and planning trips and enjoy spending weeks and months pouring over travel brochures or searching on the Internet for the best prices for hotels and car rentals, I look at travel with trepidation. It's not that I don't enjoy the trip once I'm on it. And I enjoy seeing my family and visiting new places. But, I like travel more in hindsight. After the trip is over and I am safely back at home, I can look back and think of all the new adventures I experienced and then....only then....do I really "enjoy" the traveling. After all, there are a lot of "what ifs" that come with travel, especially these days. What if I didn't bring the right items that I might need? How will I sleep without my favorite pillow? What if something happens driving to the airport and we miss our plane? What if the TSA attendant isn't friendly? What if I have a flat tire on the interstate? What if, what if , what if.......? And, of all the "what ifs" that I worry about with travel, probably the biggest worry by far, for me, is the weather. In winter it is the issue of snow. I absolutely detest driving in snow. And, because of that, I have pretty severely limited my winter time travel. But, that doesn't leave out the other seasons as far as weather. There are the Spring and Summer thunderstorms to worry about and the winds and heavy rains of Fall. Bad weather can make a flight or a car trip turn miserable quickly. Not to mention, the weather can curtail fun events that were planned along the way. And, then, there is the issue of fog.
I remember one trip my husband and I went on in which we departed early in the morning. The sky was still semi-dark as we started out heading West on I-26. Gradually, the sky began to lighten with shimmers of pink and silver skirting the sky as the sun began to filter through the clouds. We crested first one hill and then another as we drove along, making small talk and listening to the radio. One large mountain loomed in front of us and my husband shifted gears to begin the climb. We were familiar with this route and knew that at the top of the mountain we would be crossing over the state line. But, as we ascended, the scenery began to be shrouded in mist. A heavy fog met us at the top so thick that the state line boundary sign was hidden from view. Scenery, once so familiar to us, looked different, only vaguely familiar and sometimes totally obscured as we drove cautiously through the pea soup that was now surrounding us on the interstate. My husband adjusted his relaxed driving posture to sit up tall and peer intently through the windshield in order to see as much of the roadway, and other hidden cars, as possible. I too sat tall and rigid, peering carefully ahead saying silent prayers for safety. Our conversation stopped except for a few terse comments back and forth about the conditions. Minutes seemed like hours as we continued onward.....and then, the fog lifted. We drove out of the cloud that had surrounded us into brilliant sunlight and the views opened around us and we were able to see! Such relief!
I'm sure by now you know where I'm going with this. Life can be like the fog. We can be traveling along swimmingly, enjoying the sunshine, or at least the early morning shimmers of light when, without warning, we suddenly find ourselves surrounded by fog. Unable to see clearly, confused by the lack of clarity in the scenery around us, we peer ahead anxiously hoping for a glimmer of something that feels familiar.....a landmark that we can hang onto.....a beacon that will alert us that we are still on the correct route and not running off the road or into other travelers. For such events are scary, provoke anxiety and discourage travelers, like me, from going forward.
Thankfully, God is our beacon in the fog. The message of
I Corinthians 13:12 is one of hope. A hope that assures us that even if we can't see through the mist and fog, God can see us! And He is our guide through the fog and will bring us safely through the clouds to the other side where the sun shines brightly and we will know Him just as He knows us! For a timid traveler such as myself, this is good news indeed. The fog won't last forever. And it is clear sailing on the other side. Thanks be to God. Amen.
Until Next Time,
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