Thursday, June 14, 2012

There’s a dragon-fly hovering over the water a few yards from me. I wonder what he is aware of. Does he know anything of joy? Or, is his best moment just a vague and low-grade contentment when he eats and mates?

I’m at Cedarly in Oconomowoc in a newly-renovated boat house that is now a house of prayer and reflection. Though I’m a regular at Cedarly, this is my first time in the “Pump House.” Already it feels like home.

I’ve just finished reading Isaiah again. This exquisite prophecy from almost three thousand years ago is so big and so diverse in its scope that I have never really gotten below its surface. But in the last few months I’ve begun a journey into the richness of God’s self-revelation in this book that I hope will never end.
Perhaps that is the payback for having different faculties to the dragon-fly, the advantage of being a human rather than insect. Sure, there’s the dark side to human reflection which always lurks beneath the surface; we can ponder, and, in doing so, despair. Such is the end of hope, a black hole from which there is no returning.
Or, we can ponder and delight. This is a pondering that morphs into wonder: wonder that God is, even in the worst of times, firmly on his throne and not in the least perplexed. And wonder that he is, at the same time, fully engaged and passionately involved in the direction and details of history.
There is a settled contentedness like no other in knowing that the King of the Universe walks intimately with those who honor and love him as King:
For this is what the high and lofty One says—
he who lives forever, whose name is holy:
“I live in a high and holy place,
But also with him who is contrite and lowly in spirit” (Isaiah 57:15)

Now that’s something you’ll want to think about long and hard. Unless, that is, you’re a dragonfly.