God and God Alone

Good morning. It is Wednesday, August 26, 2015. Hump Day.

Today’s word of the day, from dictionary.com, is absquatulate. What a wonderful word!! This verb means, very simply, “to flee; abscond.” Example, “The old prospector absquatulated with our picks and shovel.” I simply must find a way to use that in a sentence today, at work.

Today is Women’s Equality Day, so marked by the certification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which occurred on August 26, 1920. The 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote.

Our Huddle group went well, last night. A couple of guys were late (I arrived on time, for a change), and two were absent. One had “baby duty,” as his wife had a teacher meeting, and they have a newborn. The other was on a business trip. Last night, we talked about spiritual gifts, and how they help us share the Kingdom.

Nothing much else to report, other than it’s just over a month until our 30th anniversary vacation to Playa del Carmen!

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

Today’s Psalm, from Heart Aflame, is Psalm 98.

A Psalm.
Oh sing to the LORD a new song, for he has done marvelous things! His right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him.
The LORD has made known his salvation; he has revealed his righteousness in the sight of the nations.
He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises!
Sing praises to the LORD with the lyre, with the lyre and the sound of melody!
With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the LORD!
Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; the world and those who dwell in it!
Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills sing for joy together
before the LORD, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity.

“God had manifested his salvation in a singular and incredible manner. For having spoken of marvelous things, he represents this as the sum of all, that God had procured salvation with his own right hand; that is, not by human means, or in an ordinary way, but delivering his Church in an unprecedented manner.” (p 239)

(From Solid Joys)

Today’s reading is “Shadows and Streams.”

May the glory of the LORD endure forever; may the LORD rejoice in his works,
who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke!
I will sing to the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
May my meditation be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the LORD.

Psalm 104:31-34

“God rejoices in the works of creation because they point us beyond themselves to God himself.”

I believe, with Piper, that God definitely intends for us to be in awe of his creation. “But not for its own sake.” He desires for us to look at his creation and think that, if his creation is so full of wonder and beauty, what must the Creator be like?

“These are but the backside of his glory, as it were, darkly seen through a glass.” Just as Moses was only allowed to see the backside of God’s glory, so are we. But what will it be like to see God, himself? “A billion galaxies will not satisfy the human soul. God and God alone is the soul’s end.”

Piper quotes Jonathan Edwards:

The enjoyment of God is the only happiness with which our souls can be satisfied. To go to heaven, fully to enjoy God, is infinitely better than the most pleasant accommodations here. . . . [These] are but shadows; but God is the substance. These are but scattered beams; but God is the sun. These are but streams; but God is the ocean.

Psalm 104, a psalm which celebrates creation, ends with this proclamation of the glory of God, himself. “In the end it will not be the seas or the mountains or the canyons or the water spiders or the clouds or the great galaxies that fill our hearts to breaking with wonder and fill our mouths with eternal praise. It will be God.”

Father, I do love your creation! I love to look at it in all its glory! But, truly, it directs me to you. When I look at the seemingly endless array of stars (especially when I am away from light pollution), it causes me to worship you in your glory, for the creation only reflects the glory of you, the Creator! When I gaze upon the crashing waves of the mighty ocean (one of my favorite places to be), I remember that, even though the ocean appears to be endless, even it has boundaries. The expanse of the ocean is only a mild reflection of your glory, which is infinite, and has no boundaries. I pray, Father, for all the world to see you in your glory! My soul cannot wait for the day when I can finally gaze upon you and see your fullness. My appetite has been whetted by your creation, and longs to be eternally fulfilled.

I pray for this day, Lord, that our travel to and from work will be safe. I pray that our work day will be a good day, and that we might remember to allow your Spirit to work through us, displaying your Kingdom in all circumstances. Help me to remember to look for where you are breaking into my world and the world of those around me. I pray for Stephanie, that she would know your great love today. I pray for Rachel and Justin, that you would grant them grace. And may you be ever present in my mother’s life, surrounding her with your great love.

I pray for my friend, Guy, who is in the hospital, recovering from an accident. May you bring him healing and patience.

Your grace is sufficient.

Grace and peace, friends.

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