Be it said against or for me,
Have loved it clear or high
Or low and stormy,
Till I have reeled and stumbled
From looking up too much,
And fallen, and been humbled
To wear a crutch.
--"Astrometaphysical," Robert Frost
The sky! Somehow the sky is different here... It's big. Technically, it's bigger in Kansas, since the horizon is utterly flat there. Something about the skyline of the distant mountains makes the sky seem bigger here, though. "Elsewhere, the sky is the roof of the world; but here the earth is the floor of the sky." Willa Cather penned that about Nebraska, but perhaps she never saw Utah. Here, the sky is not a detail to complete the picture of the landscape; it is the defining element of the scenery. When I step outside, my eyes are often drawn immediately up. I see the clouds, piled up on top of the mountain peaks or spread out in thin wisps from horizon to horizon.
...And the sunsets here! They're unreal--night after night. One of my choice ways to relax is to walk or jog right about dusk and soak in the serene setting of the sun behind the Lake Mountains. Sometimes the colors are dramatic and breathtaking. Other times they are soft and muted, delicate. Father, You are the expert Artist!
Gazing on one of His masterpieces is humbling, like Frost wrote. It also leaves a feeling that I can only describe as longing.
I've been listening to an Andrew Peterson CD a lot lately... He sings, "Like a golden sky on a summer eve/Your heart is tugging at your sleeve/And you cannot say why.../There must be more..." And there is more! Much more. And that's it: heaven. Could it be that in my heart of hearts, I feel a fascination with the sky because it is the veil between me and my true home? To quote AP again: "We are wandering/In a foreign land/We are children of the promise of the faith/And I long to find it/Can you feel it too?/That the sun that's shining/Is a shadow of the truth..." Heaven! It's not just the place I'll end up when I die; it's my home (Hebrews 11:13-16). And it's real--more real than this earth, truth be told. Heaven!
"For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and thus we shall always be with the Lord" (I Thess. 4:16-17). To the believer, the sky is more than a layer of gases around the earth. It is a curtain that could be torn open at any moment, revealing his Savior. That is why, I conclude, I feel more sensitive toward the reality of heaven here in big sky country. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!