The other day my wife and I drove into work together. Often we are headed different directions and do not have the opportunity to ride together. This particular day, I got all the way to work and discovered that I had left my wallet at home. I dropped her off and made the trek back toward home to recover the orphaned wallet.
When we drove in the first time, it was a beautiful morning. We thought, “what a great morning.” The sun began to rise, coolness in the air and we were ready for a good day ahead. On the return trip and back however, a heavy fog moved in. At points along the way you could only see the car in front of you. What an amazing thing to watch the atmosphere respond in this way to the temperature imbalanced between the air and the land and waters. Sometimes beautiful to see, other times dangerous to navigate. Most amazing is how fast it rolls in and how fast it is gone.
This fog, this mist in the air is the perfect metaphor for the unexpected things of life. We are just going along with our classes, our work, and our social life and all of a sudden it seem that we are blind-sided by something; something unexpected. We didn’t see it coming, could not have planned for it, and didn’t necessarily want it. Across the semester we might feel like we are, “left in a fog.” Some people are able to find beauty in the unexpected, but up front there are many others who see only the danger.
The Bible has some interesting things to say about mist/fog. James 4:14 reminds us that our whole lives are like a mist, a vapor; here today and gone tomorrow. The verse points us to God as the source of life and warns us not to overestimate our abilities and significance. Hosea use the “mist” language to talk about the fickle love that God’s people have for him; seems that it is easy to say, “love you God,” and forget about it rather quickly (Hosea 6:4).
Good news though, Isaiah also talks about mist. Isaiah 44:22 says, “I have swept away your offences like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you.” Good new! This passage speaks of God’s acknowledgment of the sin of his people, yet his lovingkindness which seeks to bring about redemption and healing. To think that all our sins/offences might be taken care of as quickly as a mist disappears in the morning. I hope that is freeing for those who hold on to their guilt and shame. God seems to want to deal with these things quickly so we can get back to a relationship that we are intended to have with him.
How does the time of fogginess speak to you today? How might the mist be a message of the Lord Jesus to you right now?