My son recently visited the Grand Canyon. He captured some beautiful snapshots of its grandeur. There were pictures of magnificent golden sunsets; skies as blue and clear as I have ever seen them; panoramic views that seemed to stretch into infinity. Dangerous looking ledges with him sitting on them with his feet dangling over the edge. Gave this momma heart palpitations! I’d like to think he must have had some soul searching on his visit there, and drew closer in his walk with the Lord. He titled his photo album, “GOD FORGIVES, THE CANYON DOESN’T.”
Upon his return, he sent me a text to wish me a happy birthday and to tell me to be on the lookout for a package. I couldn’t imagine what he could be sending me. So for days I anxiously waited with anticipation for its arrival. The package finally arrived. When I opened it I found a white t-shirt with a 2×3 inch screen print of a man standing on the edge of a ledge overlooking white fluffy, cumulous clouds in a sea of sky. A larger screen print of the same scene encompassed most of the back of the shirt, with one exception. Captioned alongside of the ledge were the words, “ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN.”
Also in the box was a small plastic zippy sandwich bag with a rock in it and a piece of folded lined note paper. I said, “A rock?” My husband in his infinite wisdom said, “Yeah and the tear jerker note.” I removed the rock, feeling the weight of it in my hand, running my fingers across the smooth edge of one side; feeling the roughness of another; peering in a hollow on another side. I admired the many colors that shot through this odd, yet fascinating piece of stone. Then I read the note. “It’s not much, but you now have your very own piece of the Grand Canyon! Love You!.”
Revelation 21:10-27 New International Version (NIV) tells of that visit.
10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. 11 It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. 12 It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve angels at the gates. On the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel.13 There were three gates on the east, three on the north, three on the south and three on the west. 14 The wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
15 The angel who talked with me had a measuring rod of gold to measure the city, its gates and its walls. 16 The city was laid out like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia in length, and as wide and high as it is long. 17 The angel measured the wall using human measurement, and it was 144 cubits thick. 18 The wall was made of jasper, and the city of pure gold, as pure as glass. 19 The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth onyx, the sixth ruby, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth turquoise, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst.21 The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of gold, as pure as transparent glass.
22 I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. 25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
My son’s note said “it’s not much.” Not Much? No, it’s priceless! Sharing in even the smallest way, when paired with love that shares the heart of God, means more than words could ever say.
Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, your handiwork is all around us declaring your holiness and reminding us that a new glorious city will one day be here among us to dwell in with you for all eternity. Thank you for the gift of a rock to remind me how great it will be. Continue to remind me to share even the smallest things with a heart that is reflective of your love.