“He sent Him from Heaven to Earth: Amazing Grace!”

  • Friday, October 22, 2010
  • Lets humble ourselves for a moment and tone down our defensive posture long enough to simply marvel.

    The Oldest Object Ever Seen in the Universe, reads today’s headline. And for clarification, they are NOT writing about my dear brother, Dr. Tom!

    The article goes on to say, “An ancient galaxy has broken the record for the most distant point in the sky known to date, with its light taking 13.1 billion years to reach Earth—also making it the oldest thing in the universe.”

    Reading these reports immediately took my mind back to the hymn of praise recorded in Psalm 8. I have this mental picture of a teen-aged shepherd sprawled out on a grassy knoll, his sheep quietly resting around him, his ankles crossed under his cloak and his fingers locked behind his head, propping it up in a comfortable position, his eyes fixed on the dark canopy above it all. A planet brightly glitters over there, just beneath the moon…the big dipper here, the little dipper over there. The longer his eyes focus on the sky, the more stars seem to occupy its space. No telescope, no Hubble lens, no magnification; simply thousands of glittering stars observable to his naked eye. Our shepherd takes it all in and contemplates what he is seeing.

    Then suddenly, he sits up, grabs his backpack, pulls out his iPad and begins feverishly tapping the screen, O Lord, our Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth, Who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens…when I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained; What is man that You take thought of him, and the son of man that you care for him?

    Thought much about that lately? Paused to stand in your driveway, tip your head back and soak it all in? Have you moved the kids’ bedtime a half an hour later so that you can sit in the backyard and study the sky together? RECENTLY? Have you taken the risk of feeling, for a moment at least, totally lost, small, and insignificant in the massive space of the Universe? Are you humble enough to marvel at the enormity of space and the incomparable grace that stirs the heart of its Creator to even know you are sitting out in your backyard tonight? Or that He would even CARE that you are sitting outside with your kids tonight? Have you recently heard yourself humming that tune, O Lord, OUR Lord, How majestic is YOUR name in all the earth…? Or swallowed your self-adoring pride long enough to ask, What IS man that You take thought of him?

    The temptation of this new “discovery” (Take heart, God knew all along that it was out there. He even gave each of its stars its own name!) will be to immediately begin arguing about that “13.1 billion years” date and miss the message God has imbedded there. Let’s humble ourselves for a moment and tone down our defensive posture long enough to simply marvel.

    What IS man that you take thought of him? Out of the thousands of planets He has cast out into His Universe, and all the galaxies and the stars of which they are comprised, think on this amazing thing. It was to OUR world that God sent His very own Son, our Creator and Sustainer! And to OUR world He was sent as a Savior!

    Now…move the kids’ bedtime back half an hour or so tonight. Play the role of the Hebrew shepherd boy for a few slow minutes. Wrap a blanket around yourself; lay back with your fingers laced behind your head. Stare long and hard at the canopy of stars that covers you. Humble yourself for a moment and tone down your defensive posture long enough to simply marvel. And teach the kids to say, O Lord, OUR Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth!

    See you Sunday, Church!
    Pastor Tom


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