Admiration and wonder

Sept. 3, 2020

Scripture Readings

It's sweltering late into the evening here in Calgary, with temperatures still as high as 27C, thanks to the humidity. I've just noticed the most brilliant sunset with an orange hue having settled above the mountains. It is a captivating picture, and it's left me with a sense of wonder and admiration.

Today's passages left me with a slightly different response than that of the sunset. There are hard themes, especially when we read through the passages in Isaiah. 

In Psalms, we read of the covenant relationship God has promised with his chosen people. How he protects them from other kingdoms and rulers, sustaining them. 

In 2 Corinthians, Paul speaks of the afflictions and hardships and of the difficulties of ministry work, yet Paul perseveres calling on the church to lean on the Holy Spirit and to have a kingdom mindset in the difficulties and suffering that believers will be tested with. 

In Isaiah, we read of God's righteous anger over Jerusalem. The people's departure from God and how they elevate their love for their sin over their reverence for God's things. Ultimately God is fed up and gives them what they want, and it grows increasingly chaotic.

If I'm honest, I don't tend to spend a lot of time on these harder themes. There is a sense of grief and despair upon review of these subjects. Nonetheless, the reality is God sees things that I don't see. He sees the state of our world: the injustices, greed, corruption and so on. I'm reminded by today's passages of the bigger, deeper, wider plan of God's.

In a world that grows more unrighteousness, I'm called to fix my eyes on his goodness, kindness, peace, humility and mercy, holding and practicing these characteristics in a world that is increasingly losing sight for this.

Practically speaking, how can we fix our eyes? For me, I'm watching less T.V. these days. The news seems to perpetuate despair and drama.  Instead of letting these messages settle within me, I refocus on the good. I'm looking for the sunset that captivates my attention and imagination, reminding me of hope and a future and the beauty that exists amongst the ever-increasing noise that threatens to overshadow these simple beauties. As Paul states, we hold to endurance and perseverance in the harder things. I'm reminded that God is sovereign, moving a bigger story that we do not always fully grasp.  

Let's keep fixing our eyes one his graces and, like the sunset, enjoy a moment of admiration and wonder.  

Julie Greb

Wife, Mom and personal wellness coach who loves to serve others.