by Jennifer Duncan
I love to see photos of beautiful sunsets and the sky alight with sunbeams piercing the clouds. I suppose God gives these beautiful displays all over the world, since He does love everyone! But it seems they are particularly gorgeous in the Ozarks, and I am grateful for opportunities to witness, when “the heavens declare His glory” (Psalm 19:1)
Sometimes I even try to take my own photo, but it seems that by the time I go to get the camera, some of the splendor has faded…or a tree limb is in the way…or something. The glory of God, displayed in the heavens, seems to be a thing for me to just enjoy in the moment…not to capture and put on social media.
I had one of those moments a few weeks ago, driving to a meeting at sunset. I was startled by the intensity. The clouds were dark, threatening a downpour, but right in the center of them was a large circle of light so bright I could not look at it directly for more than a few seconds. I slowed the car to look, and yet, I could not fully look at all! I thought it must be the inexpressible, perfect light of God Himself peeking…just barely peeking…through. Yet, even the tiny peek was more than the human eye could look upon!
I was reminded of a “Dennis the Menace” cartoon I saw recently. Dennis and his friend are looking at a magnificent sky, and Dennis remarks, “If heaven is that pretty on the bottom, think how it must look on the top!” How true, Dennis…how true. If we are blinded by the small shafts of heaven’s light that we can see from this side, what glory there must be on the other side!
I read a quote once that said, “If we knew as much about heaven as God does, we would clap our hands every time a Christian dies.” (George MacDonald).
We cannot imagine the unimaginable, since God reserves some surprises to reveal in His own timing. But we can be assured that those who die loving Him, will experience glory beyond imagining, love beyond human reasoning, and peace that “passes all understanding” (Philippians 4:7). So let the little peeks at heaven, teasing us through the dark clouds of life, be reassurance and hope…that glory beyond our comprehension awaits us on the other side.
Jennifer is a graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University and Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. She is mom to two grown (twin) sons, two wonderful daughters-in-law and four granddaughters. Her late husband, John, pastored two churches in Barry County, Missouri, and one in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Jennifer serves in teaching, music and lay counseling through her church, Arnhart Baptist Church, Purdy, Missouri. She also enjoys leading retreats and Bible studies for women.