Daily Word of Grace # 101 (August 4, 2020)

On a crisp late autumn Sunday is November several years ago I spent one of the best days of my life at Joshua Tree National Park in California.  I entered at the north entrance of the park in the higher elevated Mojave Desert, and slowly worked my way south all the way to the southern entrance in the lower elevated Colorado Desert.  This included a long solitary hike that ended on a mountain peak from which you could watch the vast shadows of the clouds traverse the even vaster desert.  Of course, during that hike I listened to U2’s epic 1987 album, The Joshua Tree, on my iPod.  The so-called Joshua Trees, Yucca brevifolia (you won’t be quizzed on that) only thrive at certain higher elevations.  As you drive south through Joshua Tree National Park you see many Joshua Trees in the Mojave Desert, but as you descend toward the lower elevation Colorado Desert, you see fewer and fewer, until finally you do not see any at all.  Thankfully, God’s grace is not limited to any elevation in your life, but transcends every high point, every low point, every desert in your life.  Moreover, there is a different kind of Joshua Tree, the cross, where Jesus (whose Hebrew name is Joshua, meaning “Yahweh saves”) died as “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29) to cover you and your life with grace, regardless of what elevation or desert you find yourself.

Love and Prayers,