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Posts Tagged ‘Psalm 8:5’

Imagine God on the sixth day of creation, surveying the work he’s accomplished.

Craggy mountain peaks reach upward toward cerulean skies.

 

 

Undulating oceans teem with thousands of different kinds of fish and sea creatures—from protozoa to humpback whales.

 

 

Flat lands and rolling hills, some covered with grass, others with trees, also abound with life—from pixie cups that can only hold one drop of water…

 

 

…to elephants that can drink 80 gallons per day.

“And God saw that it was good” (Genesis 1:25).

But he wasn’t finished yet. God created one more being capable of deep thought, complex interaction, and an array of emotions. He called the creature “man” (vs. 26-27).

 

 

And the Lord Most High endowed man with abilities similar to his own. For example:

  • God is creative; people have the ability to produce new works and ideas.
  • God is linguistic; people can communicate with words.
  • God is logical; people are capable of reason.
  • God is interpersonal; people have the capacity to develop relationships.
  • God is wise; people can develop wisdom.
  • God is gracious and compassionate; people are capable of responding to one another with patience, kindness, and encouragement.

 

 

Just like our Father, each of us is (to some degree) capable of all these abilities. We can creatively solve problems, retell events, weigh the pros and cons of a decision, make friends, choose wisely from the grocery store shelves, offer a compliment.

But evidence would indicate God chose to endow each of us further, with a particular intelligence in which to excel. Our own family includes:

  • Two creatives—an artist and a graphic designer
  • Two linguistics—both pastors
  • One logistic—a tech support manager
  • Three interpersonal types—a teacher, school psychologist, and psychiatric/family doctor

 

 

Each person also has secondary and even tertiary strengths, in various combinations.

Yet God didn’t stop there. In his image he made us spiritual beings as well. Within each person is an invisible, eternal soul, a place where we can experience his presence (Ephesians 3:16-19). And he gave us a conscience to know right from wrong—not to spoil our enjoyment of life but to enhance it (Psalm 128:1-2).

 

 

As wondrous as all these gifts are—individually designed strengths, eternal souls, and the compass of a conscience–God chose to bequeath us with one more extraordinary privilege. He made us to be reflections of his glory (2 Corinthians 3:18).

God chose not to confine his grandeur to the throne room of heaven. He allows us to make his radiant image visible in the world, as we reflect his multi-faceted goodness. No other creature was given such honor.

King David experienced the wonder. He marveled that God made us just a little lower than the angels and—get this—crowned us with glory and honor (Psalm 8:5).

 

 

Think of it: The God of all glory who deserves all honor desires to share his magnificence in the world through us.

Just this week, I glimpsed the image of God as:

  • Steve thoughtfully brought me a cup of fresh coffee—as he often does.
  • Trelene kindly gave us a book she thought we’d enjoy.
  • Micki shared her wisdom.
  • Cheri offered a word of encouragement.
  • Four-year old Elena gifted us with a sample of her artwork—accompanied by hugs.

 

 

In such ways, God’s loving kindness, wisdom, inspiration, creativity, and affection are made visible. How dark our world would be without the sparkling splendor of God’s perfections reflected through his people.

So take note:

You are irreplaceable.

No one has your particular set of gifts, strengths and traits.

God designed you specifically

to achieve pre-designed purpose (Ephesians 2:10)—

just the way you are,

in the glorious image of God.

_________________________

 

What God-given attributes do you see among your family members? Where have you glimpsed the glorious image of God this week?

 

(Art & photo credits:  www.commons.wikimedia.org; http://www.en.wikipedia.org; http://www.mnn.com (Leonard Turner); http://www.mybible.com; http://www.pinterest.com; http://www.freestockphotos.biz.; http://www.pinterest.com; http://www.believers4ever.com; Nancy Ruegg.)

 

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On Monday I introduced you to six bloggers I follow—out of the 200-plus million blogs on the internet.  Today I’d like you to meet the other seven of my baker’s dozen.  (This post grew a bit long; you may wish to break it up and read it over several days.)

My PhotoThree Way Light (www.threewaylight.blogspot.com) is hosted by Jody Collins, a teacher of the Seattle, WA area.  She often accompanies her rich text with equally rich images of her own photography.

On Monday, Jody wrote:  “I am weak and broken and needy and healed and failing and falling and healed and over and over it goes. Jesus continues to peel off the layers of my shell of protection so He can get to the parts of me that need His touch.”

Did that last line speak to you as it did me?  Jody never fails to give me food for thought and sustenance for my spirit.

A Devoted Life (www.boyslumber.wordpress.com) offers “Practical Daily Devotions for the Real World” from JD Blom—Familyhusband, father, pastor, and athlete.

Recently JD used mountain-climbing as a visual image of the Christian life.  We’re created to climb, he said, to take on the challenge for the glory of God.  Jesus makes ascension possible.  However, Jesus did not come to…

…remove the difficulty of the route.
…eliminate the hurdles.
…chisel an escalator into impenetrable holiness.
…lower the glory of God down to the realm of man.
…diminish the elevation of righteousness for the unrighteous.

“Jesus came to create supernatural climbers.  We are new creatures in Christ.  IN Christ, we are supernatural climbing freaks.”

I like that image of supernatural climbing freaks–passionate, persevering, focused freaks.  YEAH!

Redemption’s Beauty (www.redemptionsbeauty.com) has blossomed from a child of divorce and alcoholism.  God redeemed Shelly Miller, and she is now a clergy wife raising two teens.

Two of Shelly’s outstanding attributes are honesty and humility, strongly apparent on October 11th, when she wrote:

”I’ve turned joyfulness into legalism, allowing it only in instances of the extraordinary and the accolades of good fortune. I don’t fit into the rules I create for it. I’m not extraordinary enough to be the object of attention, someone’s artistic gift.

Which I know in my head, isn’t the truth.”

A bit later she quoted Brene Brown, from The Gifts of Imperfection:

“Joy isn’t an unreachable standard, a goal attached to a list of rules to follow. Jesus chose us, not because of our extraordinariness, but because His extraordinary life lives in us.”

See?  From the pedestal of her vulnerability, Shelly shares heart-touching wisdom.  It happens often.

Strength Renewed  (www.strenthrenewed.wordpress.com) is not only the title of Tresa Walker’s blog, but states the objective as well:  that her thoughts might renew our strength for the circumstances we face.

One afternoon, this teacher/writer, and mother of two grown children, suddenly remembered she needed cupcakes for a gathering—in two hours.  No quick trip to the store would solve the problem–the local grocery was closed.  And no cake mixes sat perched on the pantry shelves either.  If Tresa was going to keep her promise, the cupcakes would have to be made from scratch.

She began searching for the ingredients.  Shortening?  The can held precisely the ½ cup required.  Baking powder?  Just enough.  Eggs?  The exact number needed.

Tresa recognized a life-lesson in her experience.  God sometimes provides exactly what we need rather than what we want.

She says, “Maybe when it seems our needs aren’t being met, it’s because God is giving us the opportunity to trust Him to provide the things that we truly need.”

She has me thinking.

DSCF4687Wings of the Dawn (www.heidiviars.wordpress.com) includes poetry and prose by Heidi Viars.  She is gifted at both, as well as photography.

Recently she included breath-taking shots of sunbeams casting ethereal ribbons among tall trees.  She wrote about turning around during a walk recently and discovering sunbeams had been lighting up the road behind her.

Heidi’s insight:  “Even when we can’t see Him work, we can trust Him to do His work in and through us. Sometimes it’s not until later, when we get a chance to turn around, that He reveals to us that He has been the Light on our path all along.”

My heart responds, “Oh, yes, Heidi.  And surely such moments are glimpses of His ethereal glory– just like those sunbeams!

Horizons of the Possible (www.horizonsofthepossible.wordpress.com) is hosted by Russell Smith, pastor of the church where our older son and daughter-in-law attend.

On October 8th, he wrote on the topic “People Are Not Projects.”

“We see the powerful, the accomplished, the athletic, and the beautiful and we easily see glory about them,” Russell says.  “What about all the rest – the misfits, the oddballs and the awkward?  What about the weak and the needy and the not-quite-right?  Unfortunately, we tend to think of them as projects to be worked upon.  Or we see them as objects of charity who need our help, but have little to give us.”

Then Russell reminds us of Psalm 8:5.  “You made [human beings] a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.”

Every person has great worth, because he/she bears the stamp of Creator God.  He values each one; we can do no less.

(in)courage (www.incourage.me) is a team effort, sponsored by Dayspring.  Twenty-eight women contribute one post per month.  Lisa Leonard recently wrote “Showing Myself a Little Kindness.”

Her car was dead, probably because she had left the lights on the night before.  After all, she had been exhausted.  But instead of treating herself with kindness and understanding (as she would if the situation had happened to a friend), Lisa berated herself and even called herself names!

While waiting for AAA, however, Lisa was treated to a glorious sunrise.  And she noted:

“…how imperfect life is, and how there is still beauty to be found. I am flawed and yet, I can show myself kindness. I make mistakes, but there is forgiveness.”

Lisa is right.  My spirit breathes in deep her statement:  “I can be kind and forgiving of myself.”  And with that realization comes peace.

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

Thank you, Father, for inspiring these writers.  I delight in their giftedness and insights!  Thank you that day after day they minister life lessons and encouragement to me and many others.  Bless them, I pray, with your favor and protection, and with your joy and peace.  In the name of Jesus, Amen.    

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Laurie Klein, Scribe

immerse in God, emerge refreshed

Strength Renewed

But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31

Colleen Scheid

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Walking Well With God

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Shelly Miller

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Faith Barista

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Rebeca Jones

Building Standing Stones

Wings of the Dawn

even there Your hand will lead me ~ poems and reflections by Heidi Viars

Jennifer Dukes Lee

Storyteller. Grace Dweller.

Holley Gerth

Coffee for Your Heart

Unshakable Hope

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)

Healthy Spirituality

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Just Wondering

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Jody Lee Collins

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(in)courage

Impressions Becoming Expressions