Every year we take our sixth graders from Emmanuel Christian School to Washington D.C. for the annual sixth grade trip. We go the great cities of the east coast including New York City, Philadelphia, and the nation's capital.
Last year I noticed that the skyline of the capital is low and squatty, unlike the skylines of her sister metropolitan cities. I disovered through inquiry that there is a law in Washington DC that no building can be of greater height than the Washington Monument (Update: The law regulates that no building shall be higher than 90 feet -- still lower than the Monument but the restriction is not tied to it).
The highest piece of man-made material in our nation's capital is the aluminum cap of the Washington Monument. On this cap are enscribed two words: Laus Deo.
These words are 555 feet, 5.125 inches high, perched atop the monument, facing skyward, overlooking the 69 square miles which comprise the District of Columbia, capital of the United States of America. The words are written facing the open sky and are unnoticed by the thousands of visitors to the monument each day.
Laus Deo! Two seemingly insignificant, un-noticed words. Out of sight and, one might think, out of mind, but very meaningfully placed at the highest point over what is the most powerful city in the most successful nation in the world.
These words were intentionally placed there by the fathers of the city in the 1800's.
So, what do those two words, in Latin, composed of just four syllables and only seven letters, mean?
Very simply, they say... "Praise be to God!"
May our highest objective in all the things we seek to accomplish within the SBC, our churches, and our individual lives be that which ultimately redounds to the praise of God alone.
In His Grace,