Here in Virginia, one can almost guarantee hearing someone say: “It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.” But not this summer! This summer, it has been the heat. And not only in the US. Europe has been scorching hot these past few months, hotter than most have ever seen. I want to apologize, as most know that the warmer the better for me, but I never intended to pray for the pain that ‘my’ season has brought this year. These extreme conditions do help to illustrate today’s point, though. When we got married in North Carolina in July 1990, the temperatures were skyrocketing right along with the humidity. We had out-of-town guests who came from the northern climes of Michigan and Minnesota. They arrived in non-airconditioned vehicles and were almost at the well-done stage by the time they pulled off the road. Two friends showed up at Sue’s parents’ front door, faces beet red, drenched in sweat, looking piteous, almost gasping. The well air-conditioned home they entered nearly made them weep with relief. (Sue’s dad always kept a graph of his heating and cooling bills and later, would regularly remind us (as a running joke) of the spike in his AC costs the month we got married).

What’s my point already? OK. I see a parallel with these super-heated human beings finding instant, blessed cool air after their near death-defying experiences and the instant, blessed relief upon our being rescued from the bondage of sin and death. The before and after contrasts don’t quite match as the latter experience far exceeds the trauma of the highway cauldron of a North Carolina summer. Not only has our rescue wrought immediate transformation, it continues to ripple through more and more aspects of our lives as we continue on our journey to the Father’s heart. My guess is that it takes entire lifetimes to truly begin to have an appreciation of the height and breadth and depth of what has become ours in Jesus. And even then, after many decades, I think we’ll still find ourselves staggering at each new, impossibly wonderful, discovery. And when we, at last, see Jesus face to face, we’ll crumble, weak-kneed, in a heap onto the golden paving stones under our feet, once more stunned speechless at how beyond all human comprehension is the glory Who welcomes us home. We’ll ponder a bit more of Him tomorrow at 10 AM, 4 PM, 6 PM.  See you then.  PD

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