Wednesday, August 14, 2013

"Tip of the Iceberg"

     The movie Titanic is one of my favorites…the grand staircase, the young romance, the drama and beauty of the ship.  Every time I see it, I just want to lose myself in the story.  My husband took me on a cruise a few years back, where I would doze on the sun deck and daydream about it.  I did the lifeboat drill.  Strolled after dinner on the deck.  Posed on the grand staircase.
     I've seen the movie several times.  Read the books recounting the story.  I know the ending.  I know what to start dreading when I am watching the opening credits...the iceberg.
     I can imagine the inky darkness, the blindness of the look-outs, knowing there was something under the water but not exactly what.  I don’t think those young men were ever really afraid of the ice itself.  I think their fear was of the unknown, of what they couldn’t see below the surface.
     When I watch the movie or re-read the book, it is always the iceberg that stays with me.   
     It was a big one.  Scientists think it had formed thousands of years earlier near Greenland and drifted south.  It had been in existence for a very long time.  It’s encounter with our famous ship was only a tiny sliver of its life story, but, of course, it is only the famous part we know.
     When these monstrous icebergs are floating in the ocean, you only get a glimpse of the top. 
A small part of the picture.  The massive body, perhaps the most impressive part, stays hidden.
     Every time I think of it, it forms an illustration of Heaven for me. 
     Like those look-outs, I am drifting in the dark, straining my eyes to see what’s ahead, what life is about, what the coming days will hold.  I am a little excited, a little tired, a little fearful of the unknown.  Standing alone in the inky darkness.  Straining to find my way.
      And then there are random sunny days I can clearly spot the “tip of the iceberg.”  I may have an encounter with God that shakes me up and stops me in my tracks.  Makes me realize just how solid He is.  Realize that my life is in His hands. That only He charts my course in the deepest water.  And I can trust in that.
     Unlike the iceberg, the “tips” that I experience with Him are wonderful.  The glimpses He gives me of the unknown water ahead, the tiny slice of heaven on earth that He reveals in the darkness, for only me to see.  Those are my favorite parts of this thing we call “life.”
     I think most of us probably spend a big part of our daily lives much the same as the people on the Titanic did, worrying about what clothes to wear, gossiping about the latest news and events, falling in and out of love, meeting friends for dinner, being entertained with music and books…really the true nature of people has not changed in all of time.  We are simple creatures by habit.  We like routine and repetition.  We begin to think that the “here and now” is the most important part.  We sail through life in the darkness.  Refusing to think too much about the unseen.  Only catching a glimpse of the tip of the iceberg here and there.    
     It is the great unknown.  It’s what’s ahead for us.  Above and below.  It’s huge.  Beautiful.  Been in existence for all time.  Each of us is only one tiny sliver of the never ending story.  
     And there will be a day when we collide with that iceberg.  Head-on.  There’s no avoiding it,  Death is coming.  And in our small human minds, that naturally equates fear and dread.
      My view is changing.  I’m beginning to look forward to the day of my collision.  I know Jesus Christ.  I know He said He is preparing a place for me.  A home.  I can’t wait for Him to show me through the rooms.  Walk me down the grand staircase.  Escort me into Heaven.
     I am only catching glimpses of the tip of the iceberg these days, walking through the darkness in my daily life.  Maybe a baby’s smile, a beautiful sunset, a field of wildflowers, 
a refreshing morning of deep Bible study…only tiny glimpses of what heaven must be.
      I think trust and faith is what is takes to stay the course.  And reminding ourselves every day that this is not all there is to it.  These tiny little lives we are living are only a piece of a much bigger picture.  Only one screenshot in the beginning of the movie.  There is so much more waiting for us below the surface, so much more that we can only imagine right now.
     There will be a day I will finally collide with the tip of that iceberg.  I will sail out of the darkness and into the light.  I will see the hidden world below the surface.  I will get to experience the whole massive iceberg that is hidden to me now.  I, for one, can’t wait!

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