As I continue thinking about bridges, it is inevitable that eventually my thoughts would turn to that most elusive and daunting of all bridges – the bridge that is a bridge too far. This expression came about during WWII and endures to this present day. A bridge too far is the long shot, the “against all odds” coming true, the dream realized, the impossible accomplished. As one who always cheers for the underdog and believes in the light even when it is darkest, I am a big fan of the bridge too far.
Crossing this particular bridge, however, takes extraordinary amounts of courage and of faith. The bridge may not appear to be strong enough to support me, so there is risk involved in trusting a bridge too far. My destination isn’t visible from the bridge’s beginning, again I have to trust the bridge will take me where I want to go. I have to step out onto the bridge too far in faith.
I have to step out onto a precarious structure, high above something, maybe rushing water, maybe a rocky ravine, maybe a painful past; while I feel the motion with every step, as suspension bridges will move with the wind and with the weight of my every footfall. How do I know it is a suspension bridge? What other kind of a bridge would a bridge too far be but a suspension bridge?
A bridge too far connects what is with what could be, current reality with future dreams, past failure with future success, impossibility with limitless possibilities, – these are the destinations of a bridge too far, these are places I want to go. But I have to step onto the bridge and continue to put one foot in front of the other. I have to have faith that this bridge connects me to something good, if I will just move forward and not turn back. The promise of a bridge too far reminds me of the promise in Ephesians 3:20 which says,
“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we (I) ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us (me),”
Still, when I look at the world today, I feel so many things are a bridge too far for me and I wonder if maybe others feel the same way. I read these words of Jesus in Matthew 5:44,
“But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;”
and I think to myself, “that is definitely a bridge too far for me, it is too hard and not even possible.” Then I recall Jesus’s words in Matthew 19:26,
“With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
God makes my bridge too far possible! I just have to be willing to walk across the bridge to what is waiting for me on the other side. Forgiveness, restored relationships, healed hurts, peace, joy – all things that seem a bridge too far are brought near as I follow Jesus across the bridge too far.
“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13)
If I have the courage and the faith, I can cross all my bridges too far. In fact, just as Paul asked in Romans, I also ask,
“Who shall separate me from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? . . . No, in all these things I am more than a conqueror through Him who loved me. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate me from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus my Lord.” (Romans 8:35-39)
My knowing, being loved by and having a relationship with the Creator of the universe may seem a bridge too far for me, but it is not a bridge too far for me or for you – because nothing is a bridge too far for God. He will see us safely across the bridge into His loving embrace. Just as Romans says, “not anything in all creation will separate us from God’s love for us, which He has shown us by sending Jesus.” God has built and keeps in good repair the bridge too far. I just have to trust Him and take the connection He has provided for me. His call is constant and unchanging,
“I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness.” (Jeremiah 31:3)
sincerely, Grace Day