A few months ago, I was privileged to visit the tallest building in the world – Burj Khalifa. The almost 830 metres tall edifice, with over 160 stories, is located in the beautiful city of Dubai and was built in 5 years. Everything about the construction of Burj Khalifa is intricate – ranging from the structure to the elevator system required to attain that height, lighting and air conditioning systems, name it. At night, the building metamorphoses into the tallest display of lights and sounds staged on a building – the view is breathtaking!
Burj Khalifa reminds me of a somewhat similar construction project initiated in Bible days – one that never got finished. It was called Babel. At the time, the zealous inhabitants of the earth (unified by one language and purpose) decided to pull their resources together to build a city with a tower that gets up to heaven. What an ambitious goal!
As tall as Burj Khalifa is, it does not get to heaven. It doesn’t even come close to getting there, which makes me wonder what the real intention for building the tower of Babel might have been. The Bible says the construction project was borne out of a desire to make a name for themselves. Personally, I feel their intention was a result of an empty search for purpose and fulfilment – a desire to fill that “God-sized void” in their hearts.
The people desired to make contact with heaven. They thought, within themselves, of the best way to do this and resolved to build a tower that could get them there. However, they failed to realize that those who seek God’s face diligently on their knees are closest to God. As it is often said, “the way up is the way down.”
Their determination and unity were admirable but were channelled towards a lost cause. God, in His wisdom, knew this and decided to confound their language so they wouldn’t waste too much time and effort. If only they had known that the God they were searching for by building a very high tower was much closer than they imagined!
Sadly, many people today are still unknowingly searching for God in the wrong places: in the bottom of a bottle of alcohol, in dance halls and concerts, in unhealthy relationships, in seemingly religious gatherings, and the list goes on. Yet, God is much closer to us than we can ever imagine.
We would definitely find him when we sincerely seek him with all of our hearts.
Are you searching for God in the wrong places? Are you busy “building castles in the air,” or are you down on your knees preparing a rock-solid foundation for your life that would stand the test of time? It’s about time to get down!
“And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech. And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there. And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them throughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for morter. And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth. And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded. And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech. So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city. Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the LORD did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the LORD scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth.” (Genesis 11:1-9 KJV)
Categories: My Devotionals