I said yesterday – and have said on many occasions – that eternity is set within our chests. It’s Scriptural, I can’t remember if I’ve said that before, but it is. It’s in Ecclesiastes – a book in which Solomon, the author, looks through the wise, discerning lens God has given him and makes observations about life “under the sun” – that is, life here, on this finite earth, where it is broken.
It is in this book, speaking all about the finite and the truth of what goes on in the earth – be it right and good, or not – that Solomon says,
“he has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he puts eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work of God from beginning to end… and whatever God does it shall be forever. Nothing can be added to it, or taken from it.” (3:11 & 14)
In taking note of life here, Solomon cannot ignore that we are hungry for things that are not here – the mystery we cannot have, because it doesn’t fit in finite, because it is that good. And it’s good that it’s a mystery, and it’s good that we cannot have it yet, and it’s good – though it aches at times, it’s good.
I expounded on that terrible, beautiful ache already – no need to do so again.
What I’m seeing plainly today – as the sky shifts uncomfortably and the wind comes through my window with such gentle strength that I know it’s God’s caress and as Mumford and Sons’ new album plays for the fifth time today as a soundtrack to it all – is that eternity is set in not only my heart. “He put eternity in their hearts” and it cannot be undone -ever.
I do not know what the members of Mumford and Sons believe – what truth they hold fast to, what they chase to satisfy (for we all hold truth, we all chase something – the difference is whether or not it truly quenches.) I do know that I cannot stop listening to their words and melody.
I know that I could give you the lyrics to every song of theirs I’ve listened to over and over again and you would see the intimate, hard, and glorious conversations between two lovers – God and his children Marcus Mumford and Ben Lovett and Winston Marshall and Ted Dwane.
And I know that it resonates.
Because the same eternity that is in me is in them – and we share the same longing for home. And we know, because of the eternity in us that can never be changed, that home is coming.
“Hold me fast, hold me fast,
’cause I’m a hopeless wanderer,
But I will learn to love the skies I’m under.”
The skies I’m under.