Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Goodness of creation
“The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.”( 19:1)
Imagine a pile of large sand grains about as high as your waist. How many sand grains do you suppose there were? Now what if this pile of sand covered every square inch of planet Earth? If you were to count each one of them, the total would approximate the number of stars in the known universe! The number of stars is but one of the multitude of marvels that we encounter in God’s good universe.
As we read Psalm 19, we can imagine the days and nights that David spent as a shepherd. God used these times of solitude to speak to David through his magnificent creation. David’s metaphor of the heavens as a “tent for the sun” reflect the pastoral leanings of his life three millennium ago. However his response to what the Author of Creation revealed to him is as relevant to us today as it was to him then.
This Psalm shows us that not only does God speak to us through his revealed Word, He also speaks to us through the world that each one of his creatures can observe. “There is no speech …. yet their voice goes out through all the earth”. This particular speech is one that needs no words for comprehension. Like David, once we comprehend through God’s grace, it must lead us to a strengthening of our faith. It guides us to the realization that God has created a universe of laws. Laws that produce the wonder and beauty around us and which keep destructive forces at bay.
David understood that God’s laws worked to establish a fine equilibrium in the believer’s life, just like they did in the Heavens. On the one hand, God’s laws brought revival, wisdom, rejoicing and enlightenment - gifts that were to be enjoyed and desired like fine gold and the sweetest of honey. On the other hand they served as a warning against errors and a restraint from the dominion of those who would do harm.
I once asked a couple of children what their estimate of the number of stars would be. The answer was a bajillion. This isn’t quite accurate, or even a number for that matter, but it serves as an important reminder. A reminder that while we do our best to comprehend the universe, we must never lose our sense of wonder or the sense of our own limitations.
Thought for the day: Just like children or a shepherd boy from three thousand years ago, may we in humility see that “the decrees of the Lord are sure, making wise the simple”. And may God’s bajillion stars shine!
Prayer: Thank you Lord for the magnificence of your creation. Teach us your ways even in quiet moments when no words are said. Give us wisdom to see that your laws set us free to be filled with wonder, thanks and adoration and also restrain and protect us from the dangers and snares of this world. Amen.
Vinod Johnson Carmel MTC, Boston