but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
When Beauty Never Ends
From: Our Daily Bread
Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. Psalm 63:3
I love looking at the Grand Canyon. Whenever I stand at the canyon rim I see new brushstrokes of God’s handiwork that take my breath away.
Even though it’s just a (very large) “hole” in the ground, the Grand Canyon causes me to reflect on heaven. A very honest twelve-year-old asked me once, “Won’t heaven be boring? Don’t you think we’ll get tired of praising God all the time?” But if a “hole in the ground” can be so overwhelmingly beautiful we can’t stop looking at it, we can only imagine the joy of one day seeing the very Source of beauty—our loving Creator—in all of the pristine wonder of the new creation.
David expressed this longing when he wrote, “One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord” (Ps. 27:4). There’s nothing more beautiful than the presence of God, which draws near to us on this earth as we seek Him by faith, looking forward to seeing Him face to face.
On that day we’ll never tire of praising our amazing Lord, because we will never come to an end of fresh, new discoveries of His exquisite goodness and the wonders of the works of His hands. Every moment in His presence will bring a breathtaking revelation of His beauty and His love.
Beautiful Savior, please help me to seek You every day and to live even now in Your presence and Your love.
We were created to enjoy God forever.
More Than You Know
What makes grass grow thick and green? Would you believe that part of the answer is lightning? The main ingredient in most fertilizers is nitrogen, and the air is full of it. But grass can’t access the nitrogen in the air until lightning moves through it. Lightning heats the air and splits nitrogen into separate molecules. The molecules of nitrogen then join with oxygen and hydrogen and fall as rain—nourishing the vegetation. Who knew that lightning is one of God’s messengers to make the world green?
Learning about lightning makes me wonder what else God is doing behind the scenes. I love to hear miraculous stories of healing, surprise checks in the mail, and bullets that somehow miss from point-blank range. The God of wonders can do spectacular things. But His “ordinary” acts of providence are equally wonderful.
Psalm 104 lists some of the ways God quietly provides for us. He “placed the world on its foundation” and “set a firm boundary for the seas” (Psalm 104:5,9). He sends rain to nourish the earth and grow “plants for people to use” (Psalm 104:14). He “made the moon to mark the seasons” and uses the sun to create a rhythm of work and rest for all His creatures (Psalm 104:19). “They all depend on [Him] to give them food” (Psalm 104:27).
Consider the many ways God silently sustains your life. Thank Him for the various systems within your body and for the outside world that provides you with family, friends, and meaningful work. Praise Him for the many provisions—like lightning for our lawns—that you may not even know about.
There are countless ways God secretly cares for us! Tell Him thanks for the ways He cares for you that you aren’t even aware of. What an amazing, creative, compassionate God we serve!
Sanctification is not a question of whether God is willing to sanctify me— is it mywill? Am I willing to let God do in me everything that has been made possible through the atonement of the Cross of Christ? Am I willing to let Jesus become sanctification to me, and to let His life be exhibited in my human flesh? (see 1 Corinthians 1:30). Beware of saying, “Oh, I am longing to be sanctified.” No, you are not. Recognize your need, but stop longing and make it a matter of action. Receive Jesus Christ to become sanctification for you by absolute, unquestioning faith, and the great miracle of the atonement of Jesus will become real in you.
All that Jesus made possible becomes mine through the free and loving gift of God on the basis of what Christ accomplished on the cross. And my attitude as a saved and sanctified soul is that of profound, humble holiness (there is no such thing as proud holiness). It is a holiness based on agonizing repentance, a sense of inexpressible shame and degradation, and also on the amazing realization that the love of God demonstrated itself to me while I cared nothing about Him (see Romans 5:8). He completed everything for my salvation and sanctification. No wonder Paul said that nothing “shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:39).
Sanctification makes me one with Jesus Christ, and in Him one with God, and it is accomplished only through the magnificent atonement of Christ. Never confuse the effect with the cause. The effect in me is obedience, service, and prayer, and is the outcome of inexpressible thanks and adoration for the miraculous sanctification that has been brought about in me because of the atonement through the Cross of Christ.