“‘To whom will you compare me? Or who is my equal?’ says the Holy One. Lift your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.”
Isaiah 40:25, 26
Last night, Lord, I thought about context, and how important it is in our walk with you. When we fall into troubles, if all we see is that trouble, we are disappointed, frustrated and discouraged. But if we have the larger context of you and your great and wide plans in the situation, then our response is couched in your perspective and can bring glory to you.
The larger context is this: You are the Great, Glorious, Gracious Creator of all, the Breather of stars, Source of the solar system, Spinner of the earth, Bringer of the Dawn. You are the Sovereign God: All-powerful, Almighty, All-knowing, All-loving.
When your creatures rebelled against your goodness, you in your rich grace and fathomless love, entered this sinful world, suffered greatly, died painfully, rose powerfully and bought us back. We deserved Hell, but instead you gave us Heaven. You chose us before the foundation of the world, in spite of the great cost to you.
You called us, you cleansed, forgave and transformed us. You equipped us for and assigned us to special service wherein we are empowered to do what has eternal importance. You gave us significance and security in yourself. You made us your beloved children. You delight in us, rejoice in us, cherish us.
Everything that comes to us is filtered through your love and power. You give us opportunity to glorify you by faith. You give us opportunity to be weak so that your power may be seen in our lives. You are moving history to a conclusion and taking us with you.
What a difference this context makes! Wow! To live with you, to live for you, to be your child, your ambassador, your herald, your workman, your messenger, your servant, your partner in work, your fellow heir, your brother, and in the end, your bride—what great and marvelous privileges.
You are a wonder, O God, for all these gifts you have given to me, your enemy, the one who rebelled against you for so many years, who is stubborn in selfishness, slow to learn, who gives you pain every day in my willfulness, my self-dependence, my trusting myself instead of you, in my grieving and quenching your Spirit. How great is your love, how great is your forgiveness, how great is your grace.
You, as my Savior-Shepherd, have now allowed a new difficulty (challenge, adventure) into my life. Looking at it from my perspective it is unwanted, painful and negative. Looking at it from your perspective, it is good and profitable possibility. You will give me the grace, not to just cope with it, but to more than triumph over it and to give you honor and glory through praise in the midst of it.
No human being could ever think up a God like you; you are too good to be true! And yet you are more than true as you are Truth itself: pure, clean, shining, solid, sure, unchanging. You are the only One to be trusted fully. We glorify you, we lift you up in praise, we rejoice in you and in your making us your beloved children. Great are you, Lord and wonderful is your name.
Prayer: “Today may you be lifted up in my life, glorified in my living, exalted in my being, my Lord Jesus, King of Kings, Lord of the universe, and Shepherd of my soul. Amen.”
(Picture from the internet–David Bowman Art)