Ever have that experience where you find out the name of something is slightly—or totally—misleading? Seems to happen a lot with children’s toys, tourist attractions and fund-raising events. “Big Boomer Quadratrack Remote Controlled Rugged 4×4” turns out to be about four inches long with a battery pack connected by a small wire and the control options are forward and off. “Crystal Cascades Waterfall” is sort of brown and foamy and has a total drop of twelve feet. “Super-Sized Chocolate Bars” weigh a whopping .75 ounces and the first ingredient listed is paraffin. You know, the name itself is basically a lie.
Well, I am happy to report such is not the case with “The Grand Canyon.”
I still haven’t had the chance to visit the big ditch but I did happen upon a short inspection opportunity from about four miles high yesterday. With a few others from Cowley College, I was flying friendly skies on the way from Denver to Los Angeles when I happened to look out the window from the middle seat and see perhaps the most impressive thing I’ve ever seen from the air. I’m not a renowned traveler but I did get an aerial view of an active volcano in Hawaii about ten years ago. I must say based on my two minutes yesterday that the Grand Canyon absolutely deserves its name. Wow!
I can barely imagine the grandeur that geological feature presents from either rim. Given the scale revealed from twenty-two thousand feet, it cannot be anything less than awe-inspiring, and I come from an era when “awesome” meant “awesome” instead of “oh, that’s nice.” The size, the formations, the colors, the sheer grandeur and wonder just about took my breath away. (I am pretty sure that sensation was not due to a sudden drop in cabin pressure.) It took me over sixty years to get my first look and if it takes another thirty for my first hike there, it’ll be worth the wait.
There have been a few other times in my life when the reality of the experience actually exceeded my expectation: being baptized at age twelve, being present at the moment of another’s death and participating in Spirit-led worship.
I don’t suppose we’ll be wearing socks in heaven and it would be a waste of time to put them on even if they were available; I’m pretty sure our first glimpse will blow them off anyway!