Be Still and Glow
All of you have had the WOW!!! experiences at some time in your life: hopefully, everyday of your life: standing on the rim of the Grand Canyon and being hushed by its size and ever-changing colors, hiking in the wilderness and viewing spectacular scenes, standing on the sea shore and watching the pounding surf, lying on your back out under the stars at night and trying to fathom the immensity of the universe, or studying the clouds during a lazy afternoon, or just sitting quietly in your backyard and watching the birds feed from the wild flower seeds, or be dazzled by the fireworks show of an afternoon lightening storm, or watching the sun rise each morning and set each evening, or looking deeply into the eyes of your new born baby and trying to grasp the wonder of the gift a loving God has just given you. Isn’t God wonderful to give us these daily benefits, if we just pause long enough to be still and enjoy them? “The whole earth is full of His glory.” Isaiah 6:3
In each of these experiences your thoughts should turn to God and silently worship Him who made it all. Be still and notice that all God’s creation glows with His glory. Read Psalm 19:1-6 as David, the shepherd, experienced God’s glory as he quietly watched over his flock of sheep each day and night.
Romans 1:20 announces to us that any man or woman, observing the wonderful creation of God, has to be convinced that there is an amazing, powerful, loving God who made it all and who made me and before whom I will one day stand and give an account of how I have lived my life and how I have treated Him who gave me life. To think otherwise is utter insanity and dangerous!
The Shekinah Glory
In Old Testament times, Israel experienced daily the Shekinah glory of God; a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. It hovered over the Ark of the Covenant within the Holy of Holies in the tabernacle, assuring Israel that God was with them, guiding and protecting them. Later when Israel lived in Canaan, the Philistines captured the Ark of the Covenant and took it away, Eli, the elderly, overweight priest fell backward, breaking his neck and his daughter-in law, who had just had a baby boy, called him Ichabod, which means “the glory has departed”. You can read the full story in the fourth chapter of I Samuel The idea is that when God’s glory is missing, life is totally empty. There’s nothing in life for which to be joyful. Back in 1953 I played the piano in The Harbour of Light Rescue Mission one summer on the Pittsburgh Northside. A favorite of the men was a song written by John Newton, an English captain of a slave ship, converted to Christ about 1750. “How Tedious and Tasteless the Hours”
How tedious and tasteless the hours
When Jesus no long I see.
Sweet prospects, sweet birds and sweet flowers
Have all lost their sweetness to me.
The midsummer sun shines but dim,
The fields strive in vain to look gay,
But when I am happy with Him,
December’s as pleasant as May.
His name yields the richest perfume,
And sweeter than music His voice,
His presence disperses my gloom
And makes all within me rejoice.
I should, were He always thus nigh,
Have nothing to wish or to fear.
No mortal so happy as I,
My summer would last all the year.
Content with beholding His face,
My all to His pleasure resigned,
No changing of seasons or place
Would make any change in my mind.
While blessed with the sense of His love
A palace, a toy would appear,
And prisons would palaces prove,
If Jesus would dwell with me there.
Dear Lord, if indeed I am Thine,
If Thou art my sun and my song,
Say, why do I languish and pine,
And why are my winters so long?
Oh, drive these dark clouds from my sky.
Thy soul cheering presence restore;
Oh, take me unto Thee on high,
Where winter and clouds are no more.
We beheld His glory.
When Jesus walked this earth John remarked about Jesus, the eternal Word of God, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14 His glory was not the pomp and glory of a king, but the glory of His quiet ministry of salvation and healing. When one see the glory of Christ, it ought to cause us to stop and take notice. See the story of Jesus transfiguration in Luke 9:28-32 Read my article entitled “Don’t Miss It” under the TRANSFIGURATION link on this web site.
Stephen, one of the first deacons of the church, saw the glory of God as he was being stoned to death for preaching the Gospel. Saul of Tarsus saw that glory in the face of Stephen as he died. He never forgot it and later after his conversion, he became Paul the Apostle to the Gentiles. Read of that glory in Stephens life in Acts 6 and 7.
You and I can experience God’s glory in our lives. Jesus promised to give us that glory as He prayed with His disciples in the hours before His arrest, trial and crucifixion. Read it in John 17:22-24 How can we have that glory? It comes by degrees as we spend time reading and meditating in His Word. II Corinthians 3:18 explains that as we look into the mirror of God’s Word and see God’s glory on every page, we are transformed by the Holy Spirit until the beauty of Christ is seen in our lives. Albert Osborn wrote this chorus we used to sing as kids,
“Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me,
All His wonderful passion and purity.
Oh, Thou Spirit divine,All my nature refine,
Till the beauty of Jesus be seen in me.”
May you experience the light of His glory daily walking with Jesus.
Be still and know Him.
Be still and grow in Him.
Be still and glow with His glory.
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