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One-a-Day...for the Heart: Observation Deck

If only we could see things from a bird’s eye view. Seeing as a bird does from an elevated perspective would be so helpful, viewing a literal scene such as a valley from a mountaintop, the sea from a towering lighthouse, or figuratively, considering a situation by stepping back and examining it from a distant perspective.

We don’t always see the big picture. Observation decks are manmade attempts to provide ways to view sights from exceptionally high elevations, far beyond what our natural vision allows. Still, birds ascend higher and see more with minimal effort. One species of vulture flies up to 37,000 feet. Imagine what it sees on a day’s flight! The most elevated observation deck in the world is in Dubai, and it boasts a record 1,820 feet in height. By comparison, The Washington Monument is only 555 feet high.

The Tower of Babel was an ancient attempt by men to build a structure that reached the heavens. Nimrod, an evil king, ordered the tower building, which was like a ziggurat. Such structures had pagan roots and no link to God at all. An historian named Josephus recorded that one of the reasons Nimrod ordered the tower to be built was to avoid any more floods that God might send, should He attempt to destroy the world again. (He never will, as promised in Genesis 9:11.)

Here’s what happened… Genesis 11: 1-9 "Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. As people moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there. They said to each other, “Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar. Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.” But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower the people were building. The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.” So the Lord scattered them from there over all the earth, and they stopped building the city. That is why it was called Babel—because there the Lord confused the language of the whole world. From there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth."

Nimrod was essentially shaking his fist at God, and he got the Lord's attention in his I’ll-do-it-my-way rebellion against God. After Noah’s flood, God wanted people to multiply and inhabit the earth, not isolate themselves and stay closed off to the world. Building a tower to the heavens would not ensure they would flourish or be safe. In our strength, we can never construct a secure structure to prevent the evils of a fallen world from encroaching upon us. Nimrod’s manmade fortress was a colossal flop.

Bad things happen that we cannot see coming. We don’t have a bird’s eye view of all matters. Frankly, we don’t have it on many matters. Even if the Tower of Babel had been completed and all of Nimrod’s people enjoyed life from 300 feet above the ground (the usual height of a ziggurat), how safe was that? From their cozy observation deck, a little more than half as high as the Washington Monument, their humanistic effort to preserve themselves was not endorsed by God. His protection, provision, and blessing were far above their manmade plans and intellect.

We can see so much more through God's eyes than our eyes and intellect allow us. He is omniscient, which is all-knowing. We are not; neither was Nimrod. From Father God’s observation deck, as He sits on His throne far above the visible heaven we see as we look at the sky and clouds, He sees it all. He sees the big picture of your life and mine, your little corner of the world and mine, nations and universes. His light illuminates every unknown, unforeseen, unpredictable situation we can imagine. Nothing surprises Him as He views the affairs of humanity from His observation deck.

Are you secure in your relationship with the Father, knowing He is looking out for you from His observation deck? Nothing escapes His view. It’s better than the birds’. Jesus said in John 9:5, “I am the Light of the world.” It means He is the illuminator of men. God’s radiant light permeates all of heaven and, if we allow Him, will shine on every circumstance we entrust to Him.

© 2022, Chris Werre

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