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Sunday, July 2, 2017

God's glory and human dignity


Joyce Sasse, Spiritual Gleanings - If you have a bad night, take yourself outside, look up at the star-lit night sky and let your mind settle on the words of the ancient Psalmist. I particularly love the way author James (Jim) Taylor paraphrased Psalm 8 in contemporary English.

The wisdom and power of this ancient song shows how God’s glory calls forth our human dignity.

“My God, my God, how wonderful you are!” Taylor wrote as he looked up at the vastness of the sky. “There is nothing like you in the whole earth.”

Here he sensed the Creator’s presence. “On a starry night, with your glory splashed across the skies, I gaze into your infinite universe and I wonder: Who am I?” Looking up, one feels so insignificant, so defenceless. “Why do I matter? Why do you care about mere mortals?”

Against all that powerful splendour “we humans are less than specks of dust in your universe – yet you choose us as your partners. You give us a special place in your household.”

Alert to the sounds of the night, the writer was aware of life pulsating – the sheep, the oxen, the wild animals, the birds in the air and the fish in the sea. O God “You share the secrets of the universe with us” and “you TRUST US to look after the earth on your behalf”. You give us opportunity to act responsibly.

The poet thought of his own family. “Babies and infants open their mouths (in praise) and I hear them cry your name.”

The glory of this great universe is both awesome and humbling. But the Creator entrusted we finite beings to help care for this gracious gift.

We move forward with pride and dignity.

“My God, my God! How amazing you are!” (James Taylor’s “Everyday Psalms”)

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