Walking down the road late afternoon from El Sauce to Samaipata, my brothers, a friend, and I, discuss the strange events that have recently taken place... The meteor that fell over Russia with the force of 30 Hiroshima bombs, and the fireballs reportedly seen over California and Cuba.
“Some strange things are happening in the world these days,” my friend comments.
“Yeah... It’s true. It’s a sign that Jesus is coming back,” I reply.
She responds in beautiful simplicity, with the air of a child who has waited with waning patience all afternoon for its beloved father to return from work and sees him at last at the end of the lane.
My heart leaps. And my lips echo scarcely above a whisper,
I take my Bible and pick up reading where I left off yesterday morning -- the familiar story of the Transfiguration. At the end of that remarkable moment comes a line that for years has gripped my heart as one of the most beautiful statements in the Scriptures, and I stop again to marvel:
“And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only.”
Jesus only... At the end of the whole matter, after the glory and the Voice and the dazzling light, they saw Jesus only.
I learn slowly, but I learn. This Merciful and Mighty One, He walks in the dust of our experience and always greets with a smile. And at the end of the whole matter it’s not the glory we need; not present ease, not future distinction, not prosperity, not a good life, not a quiet retirement, not the dazzle of dramatic miracle. What we passionately long for is not the things He has, but Him. Not the things He can do, but who He is.
And so I walk down the dusty road, let my eyes drift off to the blue haze of distant mountain ranges. I could wish He’d come for a lot of reasons. Wish He’d fix this. Wish He’d put an end to that. Wish the glory would arrive. But as my eyes scan the horizon of this desperately destitute country, I know I wish He’d come for one reason most of all.
I miss Jesus. I want to see Him.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus...