Thursday, April 26, 2007

A Long Lonely Road

I made a discovery this past weekend. There are not many people on the highways of northern Saskatchewan on a Sunday morning. My husband and I attended a conference in Melfort SK. and unfortunately he took ill on Saturday night so rather than attend the church service as planned, we decided to run for home. The Flu, or food poisoning had high-jacked our plans. It’s an eight hour drive so we left as soon as we were able Sunday morning.

I don’t usually like driving for that length of time; I have a hard time staying awake after three to four hours. I knew my husband would sleep most of the way, and I can’t drink regular coffee so I started praying that the Lord would keep me alert. I knew there would not be much to look at as we drove. Or so I thought.

It’s a rather melancholy time to drive the prairies. Everything is a pale tawny brown – no shoots of life showing yet. We saw a small group of pronghorn antelope – just in time to slow down and avoid hitting one of them. They were the colour of the prairie but for their distinctive white markings. The skies were the colour of lead and a faint haze often sprayed the windshield. The last of the snow had melted that week, leaving large pools of water on the surface of the ground. Birds were everywhere. We saw flocks of Canada geese, hundreds of ducks and large graceful white swans flying high on their way north.

As our vehicle sped across the prairie I thought of how tiny we would seem to those birds looking down from such a height. Compared to their fragility, I tended to think of us as the stronger entity, but then I thought of how they would see us. Our vehicle probably looked like a dinky toy, its noise muffled or perhaps even muted by the distance. To those birds, we were probably quite insignificant as they set about their purpose in migration. We weren’t even a small distraction to them.

Then I pondered how God sees us from on high. We aren’t a distraction to Him, either. We are his focus. How astounding to realize that! God’s eyes are continually on each of us, whether we are sitting in our living room, in a church sanctuary, or speeding across a lonely prairie at 100 kilometers an hour. He knows where we are, He’s watching out for us, and He cares where we are going.

King David’s psalm 121 states this plainly. He tells the people of Israel – “… the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore” (Ps.121:8).

The Lord did keep me awake and alert on that lonely drive across the prairie. He gave me lots to see and lots to think about. Wherever we are, He is there - above us, before us, behind us and beside us. With us always. What a comfort!

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