22nd February 2004
I saw a train (old steam powered locomotive, many carriages) racing out of a tunnel and across a wooden trestled bridge spanning a deep chasm, aiming for the tunnel on the far side. I saw the trestles begin to crumble underneath the train, and then the whole bridge collapsed, taking the train down into the depths.
I had an impression of the size, momentum, strength and ferocity of this train. And for all its strength, when faced with gravity, it was powerless to prevent its own destruction.
The train is the train of materialism, and as strong as it may appear, secure in its own power, yet will destruction be wrought upon it. The chasm is the valley of death, and all that trust to this train to get to the other side will perish.
The message, loud and clear, is to get off the train! It’s at its last stop before it runs the final mile. Do not be found on the train! Get OFF!
The urgency was clear to me then, and it is just the same now, albeit much closer to the collapse. As I said previously, we have been comfortable, secure in our riches.
Even if we don’t say it with our words, we have so often said it with our lives. In my bank balance do I trust, in these four walls do I find security, in my work is my peace. And perhaps we can add to that now – in government, in healthcare, in science is my Strong Tower, I shall not be shaken!
I look at the words I wrote in 2004 and think – how absurd, who would ever trust in materialism to cross the valley of death? And absurd it is. But so often do we ape the world and live as though this is somehow actually true. Look away, draw the blinds, and trust in the security of the carriage and the numbers that are taking the same journey as us. So many can’t be wrong, right?
In the light of our often catastrophic choice for vehicular safety, there is blessing contained within this current trouble.
It is the twilight of the current age, and we bask in its fading gleams. Much that can be shaken, soon will be.
And perhaps, now is. And it is a shaking, not to our destruction, but to wake us up to the things that truly matter before it is too late. A harsh but truly necessary blessing. Do we have eyes to see?