I trust all of you are doing well on this picturesque fall day in the Upstate.
This morning, I spent some time outside on the prayer path and I caught just a glimpse of God's glory and power. The words that we so often hear from Ps. 19:1, "The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaim His handiwork," began to take on fresh meaning as I stood looking up in awe! How small I felt, standing on the leaf-covered path, measuring myself against a group of 100 ft. oaks waving majestically in the wind. How full of joy, seeing the golden sun shimmering off of leaves just beginning to display their fall color. What wonder to observe above the tree line, a beautiful opening of sapphire sky. What a delight to praise the Lord in His "natural" cathedral! Then, a thought hit me - the Lord created all of these things, and every thing else in this world, by the very "word of His power, in the space of six days, and all very good" (WSC Q. 9). If He'd wanted to, He could have created it all simultaneously, as St. Augustine has written.
To be sure, the power that we see, observe, and encounter in God's creation reminds us of several things that help us in our Christian walk. For one, we realize that our God is supremely powerful! He's like no being, no thing, no person in the universe. He is truly omnipotent, all powerful, the king of all creation. As Psalm 104:3 states, "He set the earth on its foundations, so that it should never be moved!" What a necessary corrective when we begin to think that we're little kings and queens presiding over our own little kingdoms. When we think about His power, it should immediately humble us, remembering that we are weak and helpless. It should drive us to our knees before our sovereign King, blessing His Name, confessing our sins, and praising His power.
Another benefit of enjoying God's power in creation is to experience His beauty. Let's be frank. As we drive around, we see ugliness on full display - abandoned homes; land abused and trashed by their owners; crumbled, abandoned buildings in towns and cities. Even more, we see the ugly devastation of sin enslaving lives, ripping apart families, and destroying relationships. We hear the ugly sounds of blasphemy, hatred, and inappropriate language, whether we're in line at the grocery store, in the lunch room, attending a sporting event, or plugged-in to various media. What a contrast to the beautiful, vivid landscapes our Creator has painted, along with the pristine soundtrack of His creation - rushing wind, flowing water, singing birds, and His creatures crunching leaves as they scurry about the forest floor. All of these things point to the beauty of our Savior, who came to the earth to remove the ugliness of sin and to grant us an eternal, imperishable inheritance (Eph. 1:7, 11-14) in the New Heavens and the New Earth.
I do want to leave you with one final observation: When we do come face-to-face with the infinite, eternal, and unchangeable power of God in creation, in addition to humbling us and pointing us to the beauty of the Triune God, it should also encourage us to seek His power in our lives. As we said a couple of weeks ago when speaking about our privileges as God's sons and daughters, we often (most of the time) live well below our means. How foolish we are! Let's remember that the same power that created the world in six days is the same power that raised Christ from the dead, seated Him at His Father's right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion (Eph. 1:18-21). The best news? The Father gives this same power to all who believe in Christ! In fact, it's at work among us now (1:19). Let's not live as if we're powerless against sin, Satan, or the world. Let's not act as if there's no power to change our lives, our families, our circumstances, or even our world. Instead, let's call upon the immeasurable greatness of His power - that we see displayed in His beautiful creation.
I'm praying for you,