You Are Here.

Have you ever been in a strange city and found yourself lost
and looking at a map in the main square? You know, one of those maps depicting
the street layout, with a little arrow pointing to an area with the words
neatly captioned “You are here.” Once you have familiarised yourself
with the area you once again stroll off to an art gallery or museum, safe in
the knowledge that you have a vague idea of where you are and that the hotel,
at least, is in the opposite direction.

As a child I loved looking at old maps, those made by
explorers or sea captains. I loved to see the little images of mythical
creatures swallowing whole ships and seaman battling, valiantly, but in vain,
to rid them of this monster. Or better still, looking at the maps made by
hunters and explorers wandering through the vast wilderness of Africa. They
marked their maps with their discoveries, rivers, waterfalls and mountains. I
looked in vain for the x that marked the spot where they may have buried their
treasure, or their horde of elephant tusks.

I would get great enjoyment out of comparing the
imaginations of those early cartographers, with modern day map makers and the atlases
they produced, seeing how far humankind’s exploration, history and geography
had come. Exploration had given way to modern empires and this in turn had
morphed into the countries and nations we know today. I would tap the page of
the atlas and look at the name on the map and say to myself “you are
here,” this somehow reassured me, the small act of saying, those three
little words and tapping the page, somehow gave me a sense of place and
belonging.

Today as we come out of the Covid 19 pandemic and we learn
to live again in the new normal, let us as Christian leaders pick up the Word
of God and tap it and say this is our place this is where we belong.

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