The Fog of Life


A Pastor’s Ponderings

The Fog of Life

By Rev. Pete Hyde

The night was crystal clear when they crawled into the tent and slipped into sleeping bags for the night. The campfire was now just a mound of glowing red embers. The last of a marshmallow sizzled on a rock next to the fire. Graham cracker and chocolate bar wrappers were now ghostly, ashen forms in the fire pit. They took one last look at the night sky to see the lights of the heavens beyond number. The Milky Way stretched from one corner of the sky to the other. A shooting star trailed across the sky as a “good night” salutation.

They awoke to an eerily quiet, cold morning. They dressed and opened the tent. The area was cloaked in thick, gray fog. Visibility was only a few yards. Moisture had covered the landscape with an even coating of silvery dew. The fire now lay in a heap of ashes, but the warmth of the coals underneath could be felt on the palm of a handset close to the fire. The marshmallow had dried to a hard pile of baked sugar on the rock next to the fire. A few sticks of kindling had the fire blazing while the smoke added its fragrant statement to the foggy morning. Bacon and eggs were on the menu for breakfast. (There is nothing like the smell of bacon cooking on an open fire.) Dishes were left in a pile next to the fire that had again turned to a bed of red, shimmering coals.

Now it was time for a hike to get the blood circulating. They started off down a familiar path. They had camped here many times. After a good walk, they decided it was time to turn back. In the shroud of fog they had missed an important landmark on the trail and had become disoriented. They knew the general direction they walked, but the specific location of the camp now eluded them. They wandered for the better part of an hour and were getting a little worried. Nothing was familiar. They sat on a fallen tree trunk beside the trail for what seemed like a long time. A streak of sunlight finally broke through the thick, gray blanket. Within half an hour, the fog had retreated to the advance of warm, spring sunshine. The area began to look familiar again. As they stood and looked around surveying their situation, they looked down the hill and not more than 50 yards away was the campsite. They had been so close, yet so far away.

On this journey called life, we sometimes get caught up in the thick blanket of the fog of everyday routines and the busyness of life. These things can reduce our visibility of what is really important and we can truly lose our way. It is not until we stop and let the light of the Lord break through that we find we were really not that far off track, but had just lost our sense of direction. We are given the assurance that God is with us over and over in God’s Word. Let us lift our heads from the fog of life and look to the light of His Word to light our paths and keep us and guide us on His path.

Rev. J. Pete Hyde, Senior Pastor
Santa Rosa Beach Community Church