Week 3: God Will Be Glorified

    Day 19: Every Common Bush Afire

    God intentionally placed us in a world jam-packed with glory. From trees to flowers to mountains; from mashed potatoes to steak to lemonade; from thunderstorms to sunsets to snowfalls—all of these things were designed by God to tingle our glory sensors. But, it's important to understand that every created glory is meant by God to function as a spiritual GPS that points us to the only glory that will ever satisfy our hearts, the glory of God.

    Imagine taking a family vacation to Disney World, and 30 miles out, you spot a sign on the side of the road with the logo and name of the resort. It would be silly to stop at the sign and have your family vacation on the side of the road! So it is with the glory of God in creation—it's only a sign, directing you to the source. Don't stop at the sign.

    Paul David Tripp

    Our Hope

    Psalm 19:1-4a

    The heavens declare the glory of God,
        and the sky above[a] proclaims his handiwork.
    Day to day pours out speech,
        and night to night reveals knowledge.
    There is no speech, nor are there words,
        whose voice is not heard.
    Their voice[b] goes out through all the earth,
        and their words to the end of the world.

    Psalm 148:5-14

    Let them praise the name of the Lord!
        For he commanded and they were created.
    And he established them forever and ever;
        he gave a decree, and it shall not pass away.[a]

    Praise the Lord from the earth,
        you great sea creatures and all deeps,
    fire and hail, snow and mist,
        stormy wind fulfilling his word!

    Mountains and all hills,
        fruit trees and all cedars!
    10 Beasts and all livestock,
        creeping things and flying birds!

    11 Kings of the earth and all peoples,
        princes and all rulers of the earth!
    12 Young men and maidens together,
        old men and children!

    13 Let them praise the name of the Lord,
        for his name alone is exalted;
        his majesty is above earth and heaven.
    14 He has raised up a horn for his people,
        praise for all his saints,
        for the people of Israel who are near to him.
    Praise the Lord!

    Romans 1:19-20

    19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,[a] in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.

    Our Insight

    Creation has something to teach us. There is never a moment—day or night—when God’s glory is not being declared and revealed.

    It is interesting that the two created beings (humanity and some of the angels) made to most clearly and fully declare God’s glory, chose not to. But the rest of creation—though nicked and scarred through the Fall—has never stopped, and never will stop showing us the glory of God.

    It is in a strange sense a reversal of the creation mandate. Humanity was made to co-rule and reign over creation with God, cultivating and continuing to create in ways that would reveal greater and greater aspects of God’s glory. But now, it is the creation that teaches us that God is to be glorified in all things.

    As those who now grasp the centrality of God's glory through faith in the work of the cross, may we join creation in renewed vigor to tell any and all that God is worthy of our praise. It requires we open our eyes and ears. It means we will linger over a taste, appreciate a touch, and savor the scents our glorious God has gifted us.

    I’m sitting on my porch as I write this. The sky is blue and the clouds keep changing as they move, the trees are dropping flowers and greening up, I am surrounded by choir of bird songs, my coffee is so rich—and sweet and creamy :)—the sun is warming my body even as a chilly breeze crosses my face, there the aroma of fresh cut grass and the “woody” scent the firewood I cut last week.

    All of creation is declaring the glory (weight and worth and beauty and magnitude) of God.

    Perhaps Elizabeth Barrett Browning captured it best in the memorable lines from her novel/poem “Aurora Leigh.”

    Earth's crammed with heaven,
    And every common bush afire with God,
    But only he who sees takes off his shoes;
    The rest sit round and pluck blackberries.

    Our Prayer

    Before you pray today, “take off your shoes” and take an inventory of the glory of God you have already seen, heard, tasted, touched and caught scent of…

    Now tell God how these things speak of His infinite worth, creativity, power, goodness, beauty and grace.

    Our Gratitude

    Before closing this devotion, take a moment and bring to mind one thing—at this moment—that you are thankful for. And thank God for it.