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Looking Otherward

Jesus is what our world needs most—will we conceal him or reveal him?


Many years ago, I had dinner at a place called Windows on the World. The restaurant sat atop a skyscraper so high that the wait staff literally wore flight attendant uniforms! From the window next to my table, I gazed down on a vast circuit board of buildings, bridges, and waterways, electrified by the pin-prick lights of countless cars, offices, and homes. It suddenly struck me that every one of those millions upon millions of lights down there represented some individual, group, or family. I couldn't see their color or their class, their age or their politics. All I could see were their tiny lights—some faint or strong, some blinking or moving, some flickering out. Each light represented someone with gifts and baggage, worries and dreams, trying to make their way through life, searching for significance, love, hope, or help, as I was.

Is this how God sees the world all the time? I wondered. From his elevated vantage point—high above the grit and grime, the disputes and differences that so occupy our vision at life's street level—does God see all that actually unites us? Does his heart pound (as mine did in that moment) over the glorious beauty of humanity? Does he ache and yearn to see each one of those unique beings discovering they are not alone, finding his grace for life, finally fulfilling their promise? What do you think?

I never got to sit at that table again. That amazing "window on the world" was on the 110th floor of the World Trade Center. Nearly 16 years ago, it fell from the sky to Ground Zero, snuffing out thousands of those precious points of light. On 9/11, many of our worldviews changed dramatically. Suddenly, and with an intensity we'd rarely felt before, we began to worry ...

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Dan Meyer is pastor of Christ Church of Oak Brook in Oak Brook, Illinois.

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I. Meeting Jesus again

II. Practices of otherward people