I’m a very tame bird, so I usually only fly when I’ve got some energy to burn. Otherwise I tend to move around different rooms by using improvised bridges. For example, the clothes airer, a window sill, the back of a sofa, or a curtain rail, - they all come in very handy. And it’s a more leisurely way to travel!
Of course, humans are very clever because they can build their own special bridges to get across rivers and valleys and estuaries. That human called Isambard Brunel was particularly good at it. But you don’t have to earn a degree in engineering to become an effective bridge-builder. Far from it. Because the Christian life is all about building bridges in all walks of life. Bridges between humanity and God. Bridges between different races and cultures and religions. And bridges between those that have fallen out.
Just think of how Jesus bridged all of the different sections of society during His time here on Earth. He didn’t just mingle with the rich, the Romans and the Pharisees. No, He spent so much of His time amongst the tax collectors, the drop-outs and those at the bottom end of society. Amongst lepers, sinners and the much despised Samaritans. And amongst women as well as men.
Jesus knew that society can only move forwards when it builds bridges. But a bridge can only be built when two sides are prepared to meet in the middle. Otherwise, the whole thing will come crashing down, and the world will take a backward step rather than a step forwards.
The Bible has a great deal to say about unity and reconciliation…….
“Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you………”
“How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!”
The ultimate bridge builder was never Isambard Brunel. It was Jesus Christ. Because by coming to Earth and dying on the cross, He single-handedly bridged the greatest gap in existence, -the expanse between Heaven and Earth. And unlike my clothes airer or the curtain rail, there is nothing improvised about Jesus’ bridge. It’ll stand the test of time because it’s built to last forever. And one day, I will strut my stuff along the length of it and never look back!