A colleague of mine recently returned from a holiday in New York. His first time there. He showed me the photos he’d taken. There were the typical photos of the Statue of Liberty, The Empire State building and Times Square. But then there were the photos of the more normal, everyday sights and experiences – the photos of the NYPD car, the hot dog stand and a random squirrel, the selfie of him on the subway and of Macy’s. For this first time visitor to New York, even the normal life was exciting and something to be remembered.
For the residents of New York, many of these sights, from Time Square to Central Park, and particularly the subway, taxis and police cars are part of their normal, everyday experience. I imagine that they wouldn’t be pausing to take a photo of the hot dog stand on the corner, and they may not even look up as they walk past the Flatiron Building. I confess I’m the same in my city of Auckland. Driving to work along the waterfront I drive past tourists taking photos of the view, while I, engrossed in my thoughts give it little attention. As I rush from appointment to appointment I fail to look up and appreciate the Volcanoes that grace our landscape.
I wonder if it is the same when living the Christian life. Those new to faith are wowed by the revelation of the love of God, of His forgiveness and grace towards them, of how He speaks to us and wants to speak to us! They are so amazed as to how good and loving He is that they can barely contain it. Can we, residents of the Kingdom of Heaven for longer, become nonchalant about the life that we now live, do we take for granted grace and forgiveness?
Do we forget to look up?