If you are like me, the name “Hadrian’s Wall” is tucked into the dark recesses of your brain as part of a history lesson on World Civilization, but the details are a bit fuzzy. It was a stop that almost didn’t happen, even though it wasn’t far out ofour way, but I’m really glad we took the time. So, let me refresh your memory with what I hope will be an encouraging tale connecting the past and present.In 122 AD, the Roman Emperor Hadrian had a wall built near the northern border of England that was 15-20 feet high and almost 10 feet thick. It was builtmainly from local limestone and stretched for 73 miles across England, creatinga formidable barrier between England and Scotland. Every mile along the wallthere were heavily fortified gates and sentries, making it possible to restrict entry into England, control commerce, exact tolls, and generally hamper free travel.What remains of the wall became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 and isnow considered northern England’s most popular tourist attraction. (I have since learned that—although you can walk freely on the wall—it would be better not to in order to preserve this monumental wonder of the ancient world. Sorry ) Nevertheless, the trail along the wall is dotted with wildflowers and vast shade trees encircled by bluebells, making for an absolutely delightful place to stroll…or to rest in the shadow of this mighty wall. I mused over the fact that the sheep would have no insight into the value of the wall or the monumental, sacrificial work that went into what was providing for their comfort. I am so often like one of those sheep, oblivious of all it cost God to provide shade, a wall of protection, and green pastures for me through the sacrificial death and present ministry of Jesus Christ, our Rock. How little I understand God’s love!
“For I, saith the LORD, will be unto her a wall of fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her” (Zechariah 2:5).