“It is easier to cross a burning bridge with God than a safe highway with the devil.” Matshona Dhliwayo, African-Canadian philosopher
When you live in a land of mountains and rivers, transportation can be deceptive.
Take the interstate highway that crosses the heart of our city, for example. It’s delightfully straight and flat and fast and has exits that can take you to every neighborhood — even one on an island.
But, that’s only because of a pair of tunnels that lead right through a mountain and onto a great, green bridge that crosses one of the nation’s largest rivers. Not to mention 25 other interstate bridges that span creeks and valleys in this county alone.
We had nearly forgotten such underpinnings until last fall, when the state began a mammoth highway project that will repair or replace 24 of those 26 bridges. At the same time.
A key span is being demolished as I write. And, in spite of months of media warnings and signs everywhere you look, motorists are confused. Instead of jetting along across broad lanes at 70 mph, they are wandering through two-lane side streets more commonly used for trips to the hair salon, taking daughters to orthodontic appointments or picking up some cashew milk.
It’s a river city, a mountain city. And, we are all learning that the old American saw, “you can’t get there from here,” isn’t as much of a joke as we thought it was.
It’s true. Without a fleet of engineers and contractors and concrete that has been poured out like water, not one of us would be able to get much of anywhere from wherever it is that we started. We understand that now.
I hope we — and by that I mean everyone just everywhere — can get as firm a grip on an even greater truth. Without Jesus pouring Himself out like water, there’s no bridge anywhere that can take us from here to a forever heaven.
No good works. No wishful thinking. No sliding scale. No tradition. No success. No citizenship or membership. No color or heritage. Nothing else works.
That’s really something to ponder in an era in which it deceptively seems everything is possible. He is the bridge. Let’s cross while we can.