Tuesday October 20, 2009
The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, and all who live in it. Psalm 24:1
This year has been eventful! Ann and I spent the first two months in England on a short-term missionary assignment, meeting up with members of our family to visit many of our haunts of our early-married life. Then there was prostate surgery waiting of me on our return and thankfully has given me clean results to date. During that time, we published our first book, Happy Together: Insights for Families from Scripture, and that meant a spring of activity and two summer trips to the coast to promote it.
Then our second great grandchild was born, but taken seriously ill shortly after. Again, we are so thankful that after a lengthy stay in hospital, he is home with his family and the prognosis is good, but needing a minor operation in a few weeks. Then another trip to the coast, this time to Victoria to attend a cousin’s sixtieth wedding anniversary. Now of course, Ann is back at university, and has one further course to take in the spring to complete her political science degree.
During the summer, I put together material for a second book, Guess Who’s Coming to Reign! Jesus Talks about His Return, ready for publishing this fall. I also launched a website to incorporate much of the writing we have done during the years, and you will find a link to it on the side panel, Norford's Writings - Home. All this has meant an interruption in my blogging and the letters that I regularly like to write to our grandchildren, but it is my hope that this blog will get me back into that comfortable rut I am always looking for!
Thus, it seems a fitting start today to muse on the words of today’s text, that all the earth and its inhabitants belong to God; especially that all we do is within God’s view and, we trust, within his purposes. In fact, despite the effort of many, it is impossible to get away from him.
If I go up to the heavens, you are there; If I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, If I settle on the far side of the sea, Even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. Psalm 139:8–10.
The first line of this quote reminds me of yesterday’s news, that astronomers have found another 32 planets around other stars raising the number to over 500. This always raises the excitement that we can find another earth like ours with similar life upon it. Unlikely; other heavenly bodies all appear to be frozen wastes or stifling heat. Furthermore, our expanding universe appears to maroon us in an eternal space that God controls and where immense distances ensure we are contained in this solar system.
The immensity of God’s power is at once frightening and comforting. It is certainly a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God, and terrifying that we cannot get away from accountability to him. Yet the offer he gives us of reconciliation with him gives us equally immeasurable security for life and for eternity. The vast universe is the big picture, and is an analogy of the big picture of our lives, “hidden with Christ in God.”