City or Country?

The city of Leeds
If you know me, then you know I'm a country girl. Well, to an extent. I'm not a country girl like some of the girls I know back home; I don't hunt, or fish, or drive a truck. But I do love living in the country. The peace and quiet. Looking outside and seeing green grass in the spring, watching it fade under summer heat, seeing the trees turn during autumn, and enjoying the evergreens against winters grey backdrop. I find serenity in the country.

And yet, here I find myself in the heart of the city that sits at the center of the 4th biggest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom. This is big time for a little country girl. Tonight as I sit here writing, my window is cracked just a bit to let in the crisp autumn air, and I can hear all the sounds of the city. The sirens, the traffic, the people. Every once in a while church bells will toll and a plane will fly overhead.

I was sitting here wondering at that the other tonight.  The self-professed country girl ends up in the city. And surprisingly doesn't mind it so much. But why have I always disliked cities? Why am I still, though I enjoy it, longing for a quite green space that is all my own?

I realized tonight, in the city I feel small. The city makes me feel small.

Now this may not seem like a revelation to you, but it was to me.

Perhaps, if you read my blog this summer, you will realize why.

My distaste for the city is the very reason I love the country, or I guess more specifically in that case the mountains.

Because I feel small. In the mountains, I've always stopped and attributed that smallness to the majesty of the mountains and the fact that Creator God, the One who made them, loves me more than He loves those mountains.

But I never stopped to consider that Creator God made all of the people who live in the cities, the same people who came up with every part of them. I knew it, but I never thought of the implications.

The mountains make me feel small. The city makes me feel small. But in that smallness, I find the bigness of God. The power, the glory, the majesty of God.

As I pondered this thought, I was reminded of Psalm 24.

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it,
the world, and all who live in it;
for he founded it on the seas
and established it on the waters.
Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord?
Who may stand in his holy place?
The one who has clean hands and a pure heart,
who does not trust in an idol
or swear by a false god.
They will receive blessing from the Lord
and vindication from God their Savior.
Such is the generation of those who seek him,
who seek your face, God of Jacob
Lift up your heads, you gates;
be lifted up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
Who is this King of glory?
The Lord strong and mighty,
the Lord mighty in battle.
Lift up your heads, you gates;
lift them up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
Who is he, this King of glory?
The Lord Almighty—
he is the King of glory.

Where I am, that doesn't matter. And though I'd still rather be in the mountains (I am trying to be honest here), the gates of this city are no match for the King of glory. Because the earth, and everything in it, is the Lord's. My job is to seek Him, to come before Him with clean hands and a pure heart. City or country, I'm supposed to seek eagerly.

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