Who is like the Lord our God, the One who sits enthroned on high, who stoops down to look on the heavens and the earth? He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap. – Psalm 113:5-7 (NIV)
About six years ago, our church sponsored a youth trip to our nation’s capital. While touring the capital buildings, we ran into Congressman John Lewis. The Congressman John Lewis. The Civil Right’s icon. The Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient. The moral conscience of the U.S. Congress.
We had no appointment with the Congressman, and our church is not located in his district. But upon introducing myself and our youth group, he invited us (a group of 30) to his office. His staff scrambled to find chairs for all of us and supplied us with plenty Georgia peanuts, fruit, and water.
Then we listened as Congressman Lewis talked to us about how our nation has been lifted through the rich contributions and profound sacrifices of those who fight for racial equality. We looked at pictures of the Congressman leading historic marches and shaking hands with presidents, celebrities, and several world leaders. Then the Congressman answered questions from the youth and challenged them to give their best in every struggle for justice.
I’ve often reflected on how amazing our time with Congressman Lewis was.
Greatness and accessibility are not usually in sync in our society. The greater a person’s elevation, the less available they become to everyday people.
The psalmist tells us God’s throne is so high that God stoops down to reach the heavens above. And God stoops even further to gaze upon the earthly affairs of you and me, with love and compassion.
Thank you, Lord, for the high exaltation and the lowly compassion exemplified in your advent. Amen.