Wednesday, April 27, 2011

B is for Breathtaking View

I'm standing on the hill where my daughter will be married in less than 50 days and as I look out at the breathtaking view, I am filled with awe. I am still humbled that the Lord provided such a stunning backdrop for this romantic evening. I envision the night that is coming, and I know that this breathtaking view will be a fabulous backdrop for a night that she will remember for a lifetime.

As I look out across the valley, I begin to think about the young couple and the life that they are starting, and I remember another young couple. I remember when they were "just starting out" and the future was unknown, which was probably for the better, or they might have become fearful and not taken that first step. But, that first step is what they had to take to climb to this place with the breathtaking view. 

I look to my left and I see Illinois farmland. This is the place where they first lived as man and wife, the place where they became parents. The small mid-western townspeople took in the two California kids and taught them about corn, country living and small town blessings. I see the wife, as she leans into her young husband and whispers, "This could be beautiful, let's stay here forever". But, in a baby's cry and a grandparent's tear...they know, this is not where they belong.

I look over the hill and I see the poppies, peeking up from the hills of the High Desert. I see the young couple move toward the flowers and settle into their first home--their names on a mortgage. I hear the young wife say, "This could be beautiful, let's stay here forever". But, there is a burden, and unexplained calling that the young husband hears. So she walks away with him, bidding the poppies goodbye, and the flowers call out to her, "Wherever you'll always call this home!" But, her head is distracted by the view of the clean streets of the suburbs just beyond the freeway, and she looks away. 

I cast my eyes down the hill and along the highway--toward the clean streets. This is where the young couple lives in the big house near the park-like school, and I am only looking for a moment when the school yard turns into a cemetery. How is a cemetery so lovely? I look down at the headstone, and I am struck with how the view from here doesn't change the emotions that rise, when reading that granite. I see the young wife standing in the cemetery, bewildered by God's plan as she thinks to herself that while this place does have beauty, she cannot say, "Let's stay here forever".

I hear the laughter, as the poppies call out, "We told you we were your home!" And, I watch as the couple head back to the desert. This time I see the brown skin of their children as they splash in a swimming pool. But, as they climb out of the water, I see the children growing weary under the weight of the burdens of their Mother. I get fearful that this will break them. But, the husband turns to the wife and holding her tightly, he whispers, "This is no longer beautiful, we cannot stay here forever".

The clean streets call out to them, "Return to your homeland!". They venture out once again to find their street, and when they do, it is oddly familiar. But, as familiar as it is to them, they watch as that familiarity fades for one that they love. The landscape is different for the couple; his with foothills and canyons and hers with sand and sea. The pull on the couple begins to feel that it maybe too much. But, then like the release of a rubber band, they soar through the breeze and land together at the base of a foothill. 

I treasure the view from this hill, where my daughter will marry, and I resist the temptation to stare at the past for too long. It is a breathtaking view, watching the way that God worked in the life of that young couple, but there is still more to come that draws my attention.  For over the hill, beyond the grove of trees, that are still growing and producing, there is another land waiting to be discovered. There is no way to know what kind of flowers will grow there, or what the streets and the landscape will hold, but it is sure to have a breathtaking view, and most certainly, the wife will whisper to her husband, "Wherever you take me is beautiful. I'll stay with you forever".

Linking with ABC Wednesday...because linking is cool.