Sweetwater Presbyterian

Small in size, Big in Faith and Love

Devotion January 25, 2017

Greetings!!

I grew up in a valley - a valley that regardless of where you went from the town I was in (which was quite small - maybe stretching the town to all the surround farms you may have had a thousand or so people - I lived in the middle of town and there was a cow pasture right behind my house and my neighbors had a horse in their back yard that we would ride around the field that was beside my house - in the middle of town….)so from our town you would have to go up or down a hill - a WV hill which in many states would probably be called a mountain - to get anywhere, even to the next town.  
I rarely ventured anywhere west of where I lived so mountainous terrain was pretty much all I knew.  I went to New York City once but I didn’t even consider the concrete as terrain and to the beach a couple times but that wasn’t really anything comparable…..
So my world view was where you lived in a place in which you always saw mountains somewhere and you always went up and down mountains… that is until I got married.
My husband and I were married and for our honeymoon (this is a rather sore subject so I am surprised I am even mentioning it but it does rather support my story) my husband wanted to go visit some friends in Iowa and I was young and in love and wanted to do whatever made him happy because making him happy was what made me happy.  Plus I had never been west of West Virginia and that sounded like quite an adventure to me - just me and my man heading out to parts unknown our west.
And the trip was quite the shock for me.  We got into my husband’s father’s truck - we planned to save money by sleeping in the back of the truck which was well fitted with mattresses and it was still fairly warm in September - at least in WV but not in Iowa I learned.
Once we were across the Ohio River was I in for a shock!  The land was flat - really flat, not even hilly flat and as we began to travel through other midwestern states on our way to Iowa the flat land became even flatter… How is that possible you ask - but it did.  
My new husband whose family was from Colorado and had made this trip quite often and who had lived in Iowa for a couple of years kept making fun of me as I was just agog at the flat land.  The fact that on the farm after farm after farm that we passed along the straight road had the corn growing right up to the house on all four sides with just a skinny strip of land surrounding the house and a small road running up to the front of the house and the rest was corn…. corn and more corn and flat land.  
I remembered the Byrds song “You can see for miles and miles and miles” and now I knew what they were talking about….. It was just utter amazement for me.
Years later after we had been married for a while and now had two children (and I was pregnant with the 3rd) we decided to drive to Colorado and see my husband’s family.  
My children were not amazed by the flat land and the corn - they just wanted the trip to be over - or to stop at a hotel with a pool - but I once again was astounded by the straight road up ahead.  Straight road so straight that you couldn’t see the end of it, not because it went up a hill and you couldn’t see past that but because you just couldn't see straight any farther….  Just amazing.
And now 31 years later, here I am once again in Colorado.  We flew out here this time but looking out the plane window you still get that awesome view of flat fields laid out in perfect squares (or now circles because that is how the irrigation system is designed).  From up in a plane it is even a more spectacular visual because you realize how high you are and even though the squares and circles look rather small you know that they cover large expanses of land….
Once we landed here we got into a car to go to visit the ‘old home place’ of my husband’s father.  It was three hours away - and it was so straight and flat that i can actually tell you that there were 2 curves between here and where we were going; otherwise it was straight - just straight.  I kept wondering how one could stay awake because there was nothing to do as you drove three hours of straight road…..  and there would be 40 - 45 minutes of time when we wouldn’t even see any other traffic and on both sides of the road were just miles and miles of flat land - the expanse of it is just mind boggling….. especially from a girl who grew up in the valleys of WV with hills all around.  
But it just reminded me of what a big God we have.  We tend to box God into the little world that surrounds us.  God tends to be what God is in just our little frame of reference - but the God who made the hills and valleys also made the regions of flat land and corn and straight roads.  Looking at all this land around me that you can see (our sight is rather limited in WV since you can only see what is from you to the base of the next hill!) for such a long way makes you really better understand how truly big our God is.  And as far as the eye can see out here in the flatland… God is even huger than that!
It helps us remember that we can never limit God.  God who makes the hills and the valleys and God who makes the plains and the God who makes the vast sea and God who makes the sky and God who makes every one of us and knows every hair on our head…..
Praise the God who is so big and so great and so wonderful he can never be limited to our scope of understanding - and that is a good thing!

Amen                                                                            
 Joanne



These devotions began in 2006 as a way to give us a midweek boost as we live out our lives as the people of God!  Feel free to share them if you wish.

These devotions began in 2006 as a way to give us a midweek boost as we live out our lives as the people of God!  Feel free to share them if you wish.