What do you see when you look down out of a window?
The question, like last week, is obvious but what about the answer?
To look down is to look at the ground for though we are to look up, in awe and worship, prayer also calls us to look down for four good reasons.
It reminds us we’re made from this very ground, or dust. As dust our identity is as those who are made in the image of God, and who will one day be remade in the image of Jesus, and those who are very much part and parcel of this created world we live in.
As dust we are to have a humble view of ourselves. We understand so much more the thought of the Psalmist who wondered ‘What is man/ woman, that you are mindful of her/him?’ In the grand scheme of things within this astonishing universe, we are literally just specks of dust who are small beyond measure, but yet we are wonderfully loved by God.
Part of this humility is to recognise that as dust we have our faults and our failings; in other words we sin. Again, this is not to demean ourselves but to be honest. It is to recognise that sin is not only part of our physical being but also part of those things we do by habit or without thought. Yet as we recognise our imperfections, we also recognise that they do not change the astonishing truth that God still loves us. But his love also means he yearns for us to throw off the sin that so easily entangles us that we may know his love ever deeper within us.
To look down is to be grateful for all that we have and for all that we receive from God day by day. It is to know that we depend utterly upon his goodness and provision for our daily bread and for all those things we hardly give a second thought to. It is to be grateful for the wonders of his creation around us and to hear his call to tend and care for it too.
To look down reminds us that ‘Practicing Resurrection’ happens in the daily round of life itself where our hands become dirty and our feet muddy. Our dirty hands and muddy feet remind us we get it wrong, that we sin but we rejoice in the Good News that Jesus entered into our very muddiness and dirt that we may be made clean and so live cleanly for him too.