A good day at church, ministry was smooth. Had a good lunch, hung out with people, watched a great movie (OK, great is rather an understatement. It was one of the best movies I have ever seen in my entire life. EVER!). So, then it was time to get into one of my favorite parts of the weekend: a chill 5:30pm-kind-of Sunday drive home across the city. This time from the west side of the city to the east.
It was about a 50-minute drive home and it was 20 minutes in when
I looked into my rearview mirror and my heart skipped a beat.
I saw a glimpse of the sunset sky and it was beautiful.
I could see it. It was red and orange and pink, with traces of white and grey and blurred flaming yellow lines. I don't think words can do justice. My phone's camera certainly couldn't.
Man, how I wished I was heading to the west and not the east! I really wanted to see it in full view but my destination was on the opposite direction. Or maybe not?
Without a second thought I did something I have never done before just for the view of a sky:
I steered right and took a u-turn.
That's right. I decided to drive west, just to see the sunset sky in full view. The view lasted for less than 30 seconds before I took another u-turn to get back on track to the east side of the city, where home is.
It was so worth it.
It sounds ridiculous, I know. Impulsive and rather unnecessary. I mean, it's not like I wouldn't catch other pretty sunset skies, right? (Well, you never know; but you know what I mean!) But it was so worth it. Because in the midst of my ordinary good Sunday I got to bask in God's wonder in full view for 30 seconds.
At first, all I saw was a glimpse and it already got my heart racing a bit faster than it should have been. So, I didn't stop. I wanted more. I took a u-turn just to get a full view of the sunset sky, even though the distance from the u-turn to end it was no more than 100 metres away.
I took a short detour to get God in full view.
And you know what, it was worth all the time in the world. It changed the rest of my drive home into a praise party. It changed my heart for the rest of the night. It sure encouraged me when I woke up the next day to face my hectic Monday.
What if all it takes for us
to be refreshed,
to be encouraged,
to fall back into love with God,
is to take a short,
seemingly unnecessary detour
in the middle of our ordinary day,
to see God in full view?
I'm not even talking about a full 1.5-hour chapel session, a 5-chapter bible reading, a full podcast watch on Youtube. I'm talking about 1-minute-prayers in the toilet cubicle. The 1-chorus solo karaokes in the carpark. The 2-minute silent stares at the sky at the balcony. The 1-verse read-alouds in the bedroom. I'm talking about the quiet walks to work and back. The watching kids be amused by leaves moving on the ground blown by the wind.
For me, it was the sunset sky. I took a short detour to get God in full view and what I got was so much more than what I thought I needed. The destination didn't change, I still needed to head home. West wasn't my destination, but my short detour to bask in God didn't mess up any of that. It was the opposite. I felt joy and peace and love and everything mixed in between. It was the best feeling ever. What small wonders can do to the soul!
Small, insignificant detours and pauses in the day, where we be still for once, and face God in full-view.
Maybe that's all it would take for you and me to get back up from whatever it is that's been weighing us down. Maybe that's what it takes for us to have the strength to keep going towards our destination.
Whatever and wherever God is calling us to do and to go to.