Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Magnitude of God


I spent the majority of my childhood in the thriving metropolis of Barstow, California—a part of the Mojave Desert. What I loved most was our simmering summer nights, that’s when the sky seemed clearer. I’d lounge on the cool grass and gaze into the night sky, which was lit by zillions of vivid stars. I’d wonder if any one could count those stars or how many there were . . . to numerous for me to count, for sure.

The Milky Way Galaxy contains over 200 billion stars, including our sun. How do we, with our limited minds, comprehend 200 billion stars? Besides the Milky Way Galaxy, there are millions upon millions of galaxies with countless stars. Someone said counting stars is like counting the grains of sand on a beach.

Yet God “ . . . counts the number of the stars; He gives names to all of them,” (Psalm 147:4). 

Essential to our faith and trust in whom God is, we must pause from our hectic and stormy lives, to consider the One who counts the stars and gives each of them names. Most times, we neglect to interrupt our chaotic day to dwell on God’s magnificent sovereignty . . . I am guilty.

The Magnitude of God

Our God is infinite. He cannot be measured. The galaxies, which we cannot see with the naked eye, cannot compare to God’s infinitude. He is more vast then the stars and the depths of our solar system and those beyond our galaxy. God extends outside of time. Scientist can do their math of volume per something or another, to measure or count the stars but they cannot measure God nor actually count the grains of sand or the stars—it is humanly impossible. Still our magnificent God has numbered them because he created and arranged them. Scripture says, “But God made the earth by his power; he founded the world by his wisdom and stretched out the heavens by his understanding,” (Jeremiah 10:12).

All things were made by His power, wisdom, and understanding, oh the mind of God is beyond our conception. “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen . . . ” (Romans 1:20). Not only does creation proclaim God’s grandness, so does the universe. And it is no wonder King David said, “O LORD, what is man that you care for him, the son of man that you think of him? Man is like a breath; his days are like a fleeting shadow,” (Psalm 144:3).

God Takes Notice Of You

There are events in our lives when we might wonder if God knows our address or our zip code. Does he even care about the trials life is tossing our way? My answer is yes he does. “Cast your anxiety on him because he cares for you,” (1 Peter 5:7). But most often, in our struggles, we fail to remember the grandeur of our God. When we take into perspective the enormity of God, he is incomprehensible—like trying to number the stars in the entire universe. And yet he, the Great I AM, cares for us.

In the spectrum of life, we might feel we are but a grain of sand and at times our problems consume us like a tidal wave. It might be we feel God does not take notice us, as we are speckled with trillions upon zillions of other grains of sand, that is not truth, nor is it a fact. You may feel God distant but he is not. Unfortunately, we let our feelings overrule the facts about who God is and what God can do. I know—I do it often. This is where, in our Christian journey, we should exercise Faith and Trust that our God is a can-do-God and one who draws near to us.

Did you know “ . . . indeed even the very hairs on your head are numbered,” (Luke 12:7). The funny side of that is God is subtracting the hairs we loose! His count is always accurate. Even so we struggle to trust him in all things, to trust he will not let the ocean swallow us.

Have you ask why God bothers counting the hairs on your head? I suggest he bothers because he desires for each of us to know that he ­knows you intimately—after all he was the one knitting us together in our mother’s womb (See Psalms 139).

God’s Greatness Fills Everything

There was a song, years ago, by Bette Midler, entitled “From a Distance.” The refrain sings, “God is watching . . . from a distance.” Distance implies aloofness, coldness, a gap between him and us. However, beautiful and touching the song is, God is not a God of distance but closeness.

Isaiah saw a vision of the LORD seated on his throne. There were “ . . . seraphs [angels of high rank], each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty: the whole earth is full of his glory,” (Brackets mine for clarity).

The whole world is FULL of his glory. Let’s look at the word “full” for a bit. The Hebrew word for full, used in this scripture is * “melo” meaning fullness, that which fills. We could say that the earth is filled up, brimming, filled to capacity . . . with Yahweh, the LORD Almighty. And you and I are in this world that God’s glory fills.

That does not sound like a God who surveys his creation from a remote place—in far, far away space. The most popular scripture that describes this best is Psalms 139, “Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.”

He is here, right here with us, especially for those who believe He is the LORD our Father, and for those who call out his name. God is the One who beckons us to call him Abba-father. Abba is translated to mean a relationship of personal intimacy with him. Some define Abba as daddy. How personal is that?

We are His

God seeks to be near to his beloved—you and me. I’ve always treasured the verse, which describes God walking, in the Garden of Eden, with Adam. How would our faith change if we actually grasped the idea God wants and will take a stroll with us in the garden and valleys of our life? Yet our ocean waves sweep over us and we forget the magnitude, infinitude, and grandeur of our God.

When you stare into the heavens and see the stars; remember our Creator placed them there, numbered and named them. If he, God, took the time to do so, how much more will he act on the part of those created in his image? We are not just a speck of sand . . . we are his.

The promise is that the God who is vaster than the heavens, deeper than the deepest part of the sea, and fills heaven and earth says, “ . . . neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else is all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord,” (Romans 8:38-39).

Our Father,
We have no words that can proclaim how astounding you are and how grateful we are that you have chosen us to not only be created in your image, but to be imitators of your love. Though we cannot fathom your immensity, help us to remember you alone are our source, and that if you’ve counted the stars and given them names, how much more will you do for the people who love you and are called by your Name.
In Christ Jesus, Amen

*The New Strong's Complete Dictionary of Bible Words, James Strong, Copyright 1996 by Thomas Nelson Publishers

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