Rise Up, My Love (298): Deep Calling to Deep

Song of Solomon 8:14 “Make haste, my beloved…” A few weeks ago in Alaska my husband and I watched the pulsing flow of two great V’s of snow geese and heard their urgent cries calling their fellows on as the rose above the clouds and disappeared into heaven. In fall the whole world seems to become restless…waiting, watching…preparing to fly away…where? Can’t you feel the pull in your own heart? “Deep calleth unto deep.” I think it’s the deep, inarticulate longing within the heart of man to escape this sin-cursed earth and fly up into the bliss and rest of heaven.“Just a few more weary days and then, I’ll fly away;
To a land where joys shall never end, I’ll fly away!
I’ll fly away, O glory, I’ll fly away” (Albert E. Brumley).

And, for those of us who love God passionately, it is the longing to be
“Face to face with Christ, my Savior, face to face—what shall it be?
When with rapture I behold Him, Jesus Christ who died for me”
(Carrie E. Breck).

“Make haste, my beloved!” When will our Lord return? Do you wonder? I know that “of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father” (Mark 13:32). But, whenever God the Father gives Jesus leave, our heavenly bridegroom will indeed “make haste!” The swift appearance of our “Bright and Morning Star” (Revelation 2:16) will turn night to day in an instant, surely in a blaze of glory more stunning than the sunrise I enjoyed this morning!   “And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory” (Luke 21:28). “Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him” (Revelation 1:7). Christ will come “in the twinkling of an eye” (1 Corinthians 15:52). “For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Matthew 24:27).  Beloved, our Bright and Morning Star is coming back, and it is my fervent prayer that he comes soon, not only because I want to be with him forever, but also because nothing else can end the pain and suffering all around us! My husband and I recently saw an IMAX film at the science center in Vancouver, B.C. called Forces of Nature dealing with the tremendous activity of natural disasters, including volcanoes, tornadoes, and earthquakes. This magnificent film from the field of science made no mention of the Bible, but I couldn’t help but remember the verse: “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be famines and troubles: these are the beginnings of sorrows” (Mark 13:8).

I was filled with awe as the documentary discussed the fault line in the Middle East that is producing a series of earthquakes at an ever-accelerating rate. Could this fault line be related to the splitting of the Mount of Olives that will occur when our Lord returns? “And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, with is before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south” (Zechariah 14:4).

Dear Father, we cannot know the day or hour, but we know that Jesus, your son, is coming, and our hearts long for him to “make haste!” “The whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now” (Romans 8:22) waiting for Christ’s return to set all things right. Help us to “be patient, therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord” (James 5:7) and to “take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is” (Mark 13:33), so that when Jesus returns we may share the Apostle Paul’s testimony: “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all that love his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7-8).

 

EgyptAir Crash on May 19, 2016…The Day We Left Paris!

EgyptAir Flight leaving Charles de Gaulle Airport on 05.19.16EgyptAir flight MS 804 with 56 passengers and 10 crew members left
Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris last week on an airbus A320 headed for Cairo  Vueling Airbus A320just a few hours before Alan and I, with our two youngest sons,
were to leave Paris on a Vueling Airbus A320 headed for Venice. Airplane disappearing from sight after leaving Charles de Gaulle Airport on May 19. 2016EgyptAir’s flight MS 804 disappeared on its way to Cairo.
That was May 19,  and as of today, it’s thought that all persons aboard have died, although investigations are ongoing.

Clouds on flight from Paris to Venice.According to data collected from a black box which Egyptian sources retrieved, it appears that a bomb was planted and exploded on the right front side of the plane. Investigators also uncovered the gruesome fact that vandals had painted graffiti on the aircraft two years earlier threatening: “We will bring this plane down.” The grief is deep, and my heart goes out to all those who lost loved ones, including 3 young orphans whose parents were just returning to Cairo after receiving cancer treatment in France. Air Traffic Control Tower at Charles de Gaulle Airport 05.19.16When we arrived at Charles de Gaulle early on the morning of May 19, we heard that EgyptAir flight MS804 had disappeared, and we also heard rumors that the air traffic controllers were going to strike that day, so we waited somewhat restlessly to see if our flight would even go. Charles de Gaulle Airport 05.19.16Although the atmosphere was relatively calm externally, there was electricity in the air, and it was obvious that everyone was anxious. Concord. Charles de Gaulle Airport May 19.2016Detectives have been hard at work trying to track down suspects, but there are some 85,000 people who have “red badge” security clearance and access to restricted areas…a huge pool, particularly when no terrorist group has boasted responsibility for the explosion.

EgyptAir flight leaving CDG airport May 19 2016Our flight was delayed, but we did finally take off
(followed by an EgyptianAir craft!) Dinner with Grace and kidsand made it safely to Venice and the warm welcome of our son Michael’s family. A walk in ItalyWe had a short but happy visit with our “Italian” family, Being carried on someone's shouldersdropped off Stephen and Joel (who are staying another few weeks)
and have now made it safely back to GR.  Vueling Delayed Flight from Paris to Venice on May 19. 2016However, Alan and I are definitely noticing that travel is becoming less reliable and more dangerous. Our world is full of insecurity and danger. Charles de Gaulle AirportAs Christians, how should we respond? Jets lined up at Charles de Gaulle AirportShould we restrict our activities and batten down the hatches against attack? Jet leaving de GaulleWe are certainly called to prayerfully seek and do God’s will,
but if we believe we’re following God,
then there is a comforting verse that often comes to my mind: Memorial Tower in ParisAnd when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21:28). Sunset over Coast of NormandyGod is coming back to make things right some day,Waiting to board at Charles de Gaulle Airport May 19.16but until then, it’s probably appropriate to “Keep calm and carry on.”

(All these photos were taken on our recent trip to France and Italy. I hope to share more of what we saw and learned over the next few weeks.)