Why Do The Nations Rage? (Or: Window Seat Reflections)


I always get a window seat when I fly. What’s the point of soaring over the landscape if you can’t enjoy the view? From 26,000 feet, all of civilisation looks so small. City blocks, suburban residential tracts, freeways, and farmland all look so flat. On the ground, buildings tower over us as a testament to man’s genius and progress, like the ancient tower of Babel. From the air, the tallest skyscraper looks like a mere speck on the surface of this massive planet.

Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.
Ecclesiastes 2:11

Sure, we’ve covered the ground with our cities and our fields; we’ve spread out as if we own the place. We’ve built our governments, our corporations, and our universities. We’ve chased after educations, careers, and relationships, and we’ve crowed proudly over every goal achieved. We’ve built our tiny little kingdoms, but viewed from far above, it seems so insignificant, like the boasting of ants. Somehow, the ants have the nerve to think that we are the masters of our universe.

How silly that seems from 26,000 feet.

Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves… against the LORD.
Psalm 2:1-2

It’s quite bewildering, really. The ants have rallied together and shake their fists at their Creator. Most days it’s in the hidden thoughts of our own hearts, but some days we see it blatantly on the news, and one day it will become a literal army gathered on the plain of Meggido to war against the One on the white horse, the King of Kings. (Revelation 16:14-16, 19:19)

This is where humanity is going. Who do we think we are?

Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes… As it is, you boast in your arrogance.
James 4:14-16

From God’s perspective, all that arrogance is as absurd as an ant declaring itself president, when tomorrow it could be stepped on and squashed. The truth is that “The earth is the LORD’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein.” (Psalm 24:1) We do not get to set ourselves up as masters of our own universe. We can’t even control the beating of our own hearts! Every breath is a gift from God, and every scrap of control we think we have is an illusion.

Now therefore, O kings, be wise… Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son…
Psalm 2:10-12

There is only one proper response to this realisation. Humility. Worship. “You are God and I am not.” Bow low. Kiss the Son and swear Him allegiance. Confess the truth that He is Lord.

Yes, tremble, and realise whose presence you are standing in, but rejoice! Because you do get to stand in His presence.

We may be ants, but we are also kings and priests, sons and daughters. Alone, we are nothing, but He is everything, and we are with Him.

When I look out from my window seat, I see the world that my Father owns. I see the planet over which Jesus will one day fully manifest His rule. Right now, it may be full of the vain screams of ants, but it will one day be full of the swelling song of awestruck, adoring worship.

From the ends of the earth we hear songs of praise, of glory to the Righteous One.
Isaiah 24:16


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Michelle Morrison
    Dec 29, 2014 @ 12:44:04

    Good thoughts. We do need to see the big picture and understand God is bigger than anything we might come up with. 🙂


  2. raerae365
    Jan 09, 2015 @ 20:27:32

    Caitlyn, I truly enjoyed reading this post. As I was reading I kept thinking, “man she’s getting good!” Your writing just gets better and better all the time. Love it.


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