A Moment to Reflect

1 August 2020

A Moment to Reflect -77

LOOKING UP 

I lift up my eyes to the mountains –
    where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
    the Maker of heaven and earth. —Psalm 121: 1-2

Like people, mountains come in many different shapes, sizes, and colours. Some are more impressive than others. Some are more intriguing than others. I’ve seen a lot of very different mountains in various parts of world. Some of my favourites were in Mozambique which I visited in 2015.

As we were being driven along some very bumpy and dusty roads, we passed many unusually shaped mountains in a landscape that was both dramatic and beautiful. I took several photographs on the move from the back seat of the 4×4. 

In the scene photographed above what caught my eye was the way in which the roof of the mud hut seemed to mimic the shape of the vast mountain behind it.

Since individual mountains can often be seen from a long distance away, they can sometimes act as reference points to help you get your bearings, enable you to know roughly where you are and help you navigate. This must have been especially true in the days before maps and more up-to-date navigational aids existed.

At sea, however, while you may encounter ‘mountainous’ waves, there are no equivalent fixed reference points, so sailors learned how to navigate using the stars.

In our day, of course, we have the sophisticated GPS (Global Positioning System) that most of us can access via smartphones and satnavs. Using a network of satellites in space, orbiting 12,540 miles above the earth, your position can be pinpointed with incredible accuracy making navigation very easy.

But what strikes me in each of these methods for navigation is that they all require you, one way or another, to “look up.”

In the journey of everyday life, it is all too easy to become wrapped up in what is immediately around us, as if we were walking along with our heads down looking at our own feet. Little wonder that we sometimes are not sure where we are or where we’re going. Sometimes we need to “look up” like the Psalmist and recognise that the help we need has to come ‘from above’—not from the hills themselves but from the Maker of heaven and earth.