Reflections – 2013.04

Bigger Things – April 2013

“May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine
upon us, that your way may be known on earth, your saving power among
all nations …”

It is difficult to see our lives with a perspective that includes much
more than the events we have remembered, the joys and struggles we are
currently experiencing or what our dreams are for the future.   At any
moment, we might describe our lives as busy, quiet, active, fruitful,
happy, rich, a wreck, etc…

As Christians, it is easy to bring this intensely self-oriented
perspective over into our understanding of how the Lord operates.  And
part of that is quite right – our relationship with Jesus is deeply
personal, touches every part of our being.   All of our memories,
current struggles or joys, and future thoughts are informed by this
deeply personal understanding of the work of Christ in our lives, His
saving power demonstrated on the cross and in the resurrection in
taking our sins and giving us, by His grace, life, now and forever.
And the Scripture calls us to personal response to that grace, that we
are to love the Lord our God with our whole mind, heart, soul and
strength.  Paul tells the Romans that we are to offer up our bodies as
living sacrifices.  He tells the Ephesians that we were made for good
works that God has prepared for us, that we might walk in them.  So,
our faith is personal.

But there are bigger things.  And sometimes we catch a picture of them
in the Psalms.  Here in Psalm 67 the psalmist asks the Lord to shine
His face on His people.  To show us His grace.  To bless us.  We do
the same when we pray for one another – we want the Lord to bless us,
all of us, with His grace, with a face that shines on us.  Personal,
yet in community with other believers.  So maybe the word “us” extends
our vision a little.  But there are bigger things.

Here in Psalm 67 we see the purpose of the blessing of God on His
people (well, one of the purposes) – that His saving power would be
made known among the nations, that His way would be made known on the
earth.  The Lord’s vision extends to the nations, to all of creation
and He is always working that vision out – and in small ways – e.g.,
through our faithful living, proclamation of the Gospel,  and
Christ-centered prayer lives – we have our part to play … He “uses”
us … well He invites us, actually, into what He is doing, into the
bigger things.  Delight in that.  Delight in the truth that the Lord
is greater than you.  And that His vision is grand and glorious.  And
that you are a part of that vision.  And may God be glorified as we
delight in Him.