The Witness of Nature and the Praise of Man-May 19, 2013
God provides for creation at their proper time. They are always in His care. When they are provided for the creatures are satisfied with the good things. How about us? Do we trust God for our provisions? Are we satisfied with His good gifts? Perhaps it is easier to say we trust God but much harder to really let go and trust Him. Even worse would be that we say we trust God and then try to provide under our own power, and treat God’s way like the back-up plan if our plan doesn’t work. Then we want to get upset or frustrated when things do go as planned.
Another scenario is that we want to do what we wish and hope God will bless our plans and expand them with extra blessings. The witness of nature proclaims a different reality that a perfect loving God created us, and He does not create creatures without a capacity or contingency to provide for them. When those provisions do come they give thanks because they know it is by His hands, and never wanting or asking for more but are satisfied with all the creator has given them.
Humanity on the other hands seems to forget its blessedness. Rather than trusting God we try to trust our own sweat for provision and curse God that we are not blessed. The reality is that we are blessed, but we in this land of opportunity and plenty are unable to see our own deeper hunger of the soul. We cry out that we are not satisfied and blessed because we can’t see the provisions of God because our own “to do” lists are in the way.
If God were not to be present anymore or we were unaware of His reality, would you feel alone, terrified, or helpless? His is the creator and sustainer of all without Him life would not be possible. What would happen if there was no God? Most of us if we are honest unless we have been very sick or have a breathing disease take for granted each breath that we are taking and how God is part of even the seemingly simple things in life. Consider the planets in their courses would they remain if God were not there? What about the fine tuning of this planet to allow us and all the creatures to be able to survive? We serve a terrifying, awesome, great, and wonderful God. It is because of God that all things including our lives exist. Without breath or the Hebrew word ru’ah meaning spirit we would cease to exist and just become the stuff we are made of, dust.
How is it that we are so blessed that many times we don’t recognize His presence until something shakes our world and we believe that God is not there or He has turned away. This feeling is not unique to our time, consider the silence of the Egyptian enslavement, forty years of wondering, four-hundred years from the close of the Old Testament until…until the word and present action they were looking for became the Word present and living among them.
The gift of life is from God and we are but the stuff of this earth. The rise and fall of each breath gets choked out on the dust of this world that we are constantly trying to drink in. Dusty things like pride, envy, jealousy, consumerism, and vengeful justice. This dusty list is not exhaustive but it is expensive it could cost us our very lives. When our breath is gone and our bodies are dust it will be too late to protest. The question then becomes will we see the signs of nature that know the creator, will we terror when He is gone rather than trying to ignore Him, and will we praise Him for His mighty works?
My friends it is not all bad because our God is in the second-chance saving business. He is the God of renewal of our lives, restoration in our relationships with Him, and is ready for us to praise Him for His glory and not because of our blessings. Don’t look at what you have as a reason to praise God, but rather look at Him and praise Him for who He is and the greatness of His glory.
Our days on this earth can be days of praise. I hope that we will not have to wait until God hides His face before we will know the brilliance we have been walking in every day.
1 Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory
in the heavens.
2 Through the praise of children and infants
you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
to silence the foe and the avenger.
3 When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
4 what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?[c]
5 You have made them[d] a little lower than the angels[e]
and crowned them[f] with glory and honor.
6 You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
you put everything under their[g] feet:
7 all flocks and herds,
and the animals of the wild,
8 the birds in the sky,
and the fish in the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.
9 Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!-Psalm 8
And 34 May my meditation be pleasing to him,
as I rejoice in the Lord.-Psalm 104:34
The power of Pentecost is the fulfillment of the promise of Christ that he would be with us always. If we look at Pentecost as an event for the Holy Spirit, tongues, and extraordinary emotions we miss the greater blessing. The greater blessing is the sustaining power of the Holy Spirit for daily living. It is this Holy Spirit that first gave the afraid disciples courage to leave the safety of the upper room before they could preach the gospel.
On many of our toughest days we need that same encouragement to get out of bed or the house, to face the world, and to live our lives. Trusting the Holy Spirit for daily living will always come before we see the Spirit’s power at work. We need to recognize how the Holy Spirit has sustained us each day and that will help us to trust even more for daily living.
The work of the Trinity is that of creating, redeeming, and sustaining. Do you need help for daily living? Trust the promise of Christ and the presence of the Spirit that you are not alone. Your life is being sustained through the Holy Spirit, the Spirit’s presence encourage our days ahead, and the power of that promise is better than a 1,000 sermons.