Into an Alien World

Psalm 139:7-11 ia a favorite text of mine.  In 1957, I heard Jim Reeves sing, “Fly the ocean in a  silver plane.  See the jungle when it’s wet with rain…”  I knew that one day I wanted to see the world. I would sail the seven seas, fly into the highest heavens, climb snow-capped peaks, and trek across arid deserts–all without fear.  The next line in Mr. Reeves song is, “…Just remember ’til you’re home again, you belong to me.”  I knew I could dare to go wherever God lead because He is God and I am His.

Today, while planes are no longer silver and I have seen and tasted jungle rain, I still hunger to travel to the farthest reaches of the globe–if for no other reason than because it’s there. (Probably that’s why I love watching TV’s Amazing Race.  While I’ll never ride a zip line or parachute from a plane, I can live vicariously through those who do.)

I find myself equally fascinated with traveling into the great beyond.  When the Russian cosmonaut declared that he’d been in outer space and didn’t see God, I chuckled.  How ironic,  a half a century later, the Russian military is now assigning chaplains to their troops.  And where is that scoffing space traveler today?

When I read the article entitled, Into an Alien World, about James Cameron’s dive into the deepest part of the ocean–the Mariana Trench–a place further into the abyss than Mt. Everest is tall, my imagination comes alive once again.  I wonder, did Mr. Cameron find God down there?  The adventurer did find many new species of sea life, but did he find the final resting place for my sins as well?

Regardless, Mr. Cameron could be assured that no matter how deeply he dived, he didn’t out-dive his Creator.  The Message Bible puts it this way:  Is there any place I can go to avoid Your Spirit?  to be out of Your sight? If I climb to the sky, You’re there.  If I go underground, you’re there! If I flew on the morning’s wings to the far western horizon, You’d find me in a minute–You’re already there.  …It’s a fact darkness isn’t dark to you; night and day, darkness and light, they’re all the same to you.  

The best news is my days of traveling are far from over.  For my biggest excursion, I won’t need a rocket ship, a bathyscaphe, or pressurized apparel. While so much else will have changed the most important feature will not.  For while I will travel on angel wings, my Creator will escort me, not into an alien world, but a world of joy, love and laughter.



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