Several years ago I had the chance to do some mountain climbing in the Colorado rockies. Just me, my climbing partners, and a very cold steep rock face. I had never done anything like that before and (as you’d imagine) I was pretty nervous. I made it to the top but it took a lot of determination, willpower, and some inner strength I didn’t realize I had. I was reminded of that trip as I ran across this story about a similarly anxious young lady…
Brenda was a young woman that wanted to learn to go rock climbing. Although she was scared to death she went with a group and they faced this tremendous cliff of rock. Practically perpendicular. In spite of her fear, she put on the gear and she took a hold of the rope and she started up the face of that rock.
Well, she got to a ledge where she could take a breather. As she was hanging on there, whoever was holding the rope up at the top of the cliff made a mistake and snapped the rope against Brenda’s eye and knocked out her contact lens.
You know how tiny contact lenses are and how almost impossible to find. Well, here she is on a rock ledge, with who know how many hundreds of feet behind and hundreds of feet above her. Of course, she looked and looked and looked, hoping that she would be able to find that contact lens. Here she was, very far from home. Her sight was now blurry. She was very upset by the fact that she wouldn’t be anywhere near a place where she could get a new contact lens. And she prayed that the Lord would help her to find it.
Well, her last hope was that perhaps when she got to the top of the cliff, one of the girls that was up there on the top might be able to find her contact lens in the corner of her eye. When she got to the top, a friend examined her eye. There was no contact lens to be found. She sat down with the rest of the party, waiting for the rest of them to come up the face of the cliff.
She looked out across range after range of mountains, thinking of that Bible verse that says, “The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth.” She thought, “Lord, You can see all these mountains. You know every single stone and leaf that’s on those mountains and You know exactly where my contact lens is.”
Finally, the time came when it was time to go down. They walked down the trail to the bottom. Just as they got there, there was a new party of rock climbers coming along. As one of them started up the face of the cliff, she shouted out, “Hey, you guys! Anybody lose a contact lens?”
Well, that would be startling enough, wouldn’t it? She had found the contact lens! But you know why she saw it? An ant was carrying that contact lens so that it was moving slowly across the face of the rock. [by Elizabeth Elliot in “Keep a Quiet Heart”]
A giant rock wall… hundreds of thousands of rocks… millions of ants…
…and the contact lens is transparent.
The hikers at the bottom catch a tiny gleam of light bouncing off the rock and actually take the time to investigate it.
Can you imagine what they thought when they found it? Where did this come from? What are the chances we’ll find the owner? Why didn’t it break on impact?
And then the team comes down the mountain… and owner gets reunited with lens.
Something that was extremely unlikely happened. Sound unbelievable? I know. When I read this story, I quietly wondered if it was true. To our finite minds… things like this just don’t happen. Lenses break. People give up. Things become irretrievable. Marriages fail. People leave. Tests come back positive. Friends reject.
Good thing God doesn’t think like us. God is magnified in the details of situations we give up on. He specializes in catching the towel we throw in and nailing it to the cross.
He never gives up.
He never stops looking.
He never says “you’re on your own”
He sends an ant to carry a contact lens back to its owner. We don’t understand it. We don’t deserve it. And we didn’t earn it.
God notices the small stuff and He does the impossible.
Does He really see it when I cry out? Yes.
Can He really put people in my child’s life to get them back on the path? Yes.
Is He paying attention to my finances? Strengthening me during the doctors visits?
Making it obvious when a boyfriend/girlfriend isn’t “the one?” Yes, yes, yes.
Here it is Wednesday and you’re ready to stop looking for that contact lens… to give up… to move it over to the impossible column in your mind. God has a word for you today:
“What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it.” Matthew 10:29
“Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?” Matthew 6:26
What do these two verses have in common? Two words: God cares. He sincerely does.
Some of you have carried a very heavy burden for many long years. Just when you think it’s getting better, the enemy chuckles and knocks you back down. What you used to call a temporary problem has devolved into what you now call pain. Life hurts… but God loves. God does the impossible. God changes things. God’s eyes are on you. God knows. God cares.
Look down today… see that contact lens that you’d given up on? It’s there… unbroken and supernaturally perfect. So is the peace, power, and perseverance for the next time something seems impossible. Reach down… claim them. It may seem like you face long odds today… but fortunately for you… His eye is on you… and the unlikely is where He flourishes.