Grass, Grotto, and the Gospel
My Summer Reflection
All summer long, I have been thinking about Mathew 12:20, “A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not quench.” This verse speaks about a gentle servant as prophesied by prophet Isaiah and fulfilled in Jesus. A reed is a type of hollow grass that becomes even weaker after it is bruised. Yet, Jesus, out of his tender and merciful heart, will not break it. This imagery of a bruised reed gives me tremendous comfort, hope, and encouragement while I am recovering from my ankle injury. I know that even though I am as weak as a grass, Jesus, out of His rich mercy, continues to watch over and sustain me.
Despite my weak ankle, our family managed to visit the Grotto of Redemption in West Bend, Iowa. Depicting nine different scenes of Jesus’ life, this fascinating grotto has the largest collection of precious stones and germs in any single location in the world. Standing in front of this largest man-made grotto in the world with awe, I thought of the new Jerusalem described in Revelation 21:18-21.
“The wall was built of jasper, while the city was pure gold, like clear glass. The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with every kind of jewel. The first was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, the fifth onyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, the twelfth amethyst. And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.”
Imagine a city built of pure gold and with the foundations of wall being adorned with 12 different kinds of precious jewels! Being neither an architect nor a geologist, it is hard for me to picture the new Jerusalem, so I am especially grateful that the Grotto of Redemption gives me a tiny glimpse of the future glory of our heavenly dwelling and even more so, a future hope of being fully healed and restored. As it is stated in 1 Peter 5:10-11, “And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”