Driving over an hour to reach our hiking destination we circled and circled down the side of the hill on a rocky “road.” Together, the 4 of us hopped out of our cozy seats and began the trek down to our destination. Winding through the trails, hopping over and under fallen trees, using ropes to descend down, and climbing over and around slick rocks alongside the rushing river, we remained focused on our goal.
I rounded the bend and my heart stopped for a moment. There I stood, enthralled with the power and beauty of the canyon as a roaring waterfall plunged over the wall. I stood in awe–taking in all the colors and details.
The water glistened shades of ocean blue, as the afternoon sun bounced through the crevices in the canyon walls.
The noise of the world was drowned out by the powerful sound of water crashing into the bottom of the canyon, echoing through the jagged, curved rock walls.
The journey it took quickly faded. It paled in comparison to the majesty in front of my eyes.
The pain of legs burning and the focused patience to reach the destination were worth it.
When I just stood and took in the magnificent power of the waterfall, the difficult journey to find this masterpiece never once crossed my mind.
I never thought it was a waste of time or energy to come find this beautiful hidden gem, because sitting at the bottom of the canyon taking in the power of creation was invigorating to my soul.
It was in that moment I saw eternity, a vision of this life.
The painful moments in the journey of life–I will feel them every step along the way on this earth. The hardships of rocks, down trees, hills, the twist and turns, the climb up, they will be a part of the story to His glory.
But when I finally sit before the lamb that was slain who sits on his throne, it will fade away because his majesty is far greater than the suffering and brokenness of this earth.
All that consumes my life now won’t matter when I fall before my God in awe of him.
Just like that waterfall in the canyon erased my memory of the hard road to reach it, I believe the same picture applies to our life on this broken earth.
I am in awe of God’s creation in a broken and fallen world. This earth is dying and groaning from decay and we still find it beautiful.
Can you imagine beholding Jesus in a new heaven and earth where brokenness, sin, and death does not exist?
Can you imagine what beauty our eyes will behold in his presence?
If I am enthralled with creation in a fallen earth, what will my soul feel when my eyes fall upon Jesus, sitting on his throne in a new, redeemed, and perfect earth?
God, the great artist, creating a masterpiece in a new heaven and earth that we will enjoy for eternity.
I am convinced, I won’t once look back and see the suffering, hurt, pain and hard days I endured on this broken earth because I will be too captivated by my King. His beauty and majesty will demand all of my attention and praise and I will not have time to think or remember the painful days on this journey on earth.
This isn’t a prayerful wish, no He promises us this will be true.
Look, I will make new heavens and a new earth,
and people will not remember the past or think about those things. (Is 65v17)
This life on earth will pale in comparison when we sit before the King of Kings with arms stretched high declaring,
“Blessing and honor and glory and power belong
to the one sitting on the throne and to the Lamb forever and ever.” (Rev 5v13)
So, I utter the words of Paul, because I know our future glory that awaits will erase the hard journey we may find ourselves in today.
Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.