Sunday, March 8, 2009

Trifles and Triumphs

Sugar Plum Snowflake

Image by CaptPiper via Flickr

I read something from my beloved G. H. Morrison devotional today that seemed to dovetail perfectly with my previous two posts.  I already had a different devotional scheduled to post today, but it will have to wait.  I want to share this with you.

Morrison was opening up the grandeur of Matt. 10:42, showing the great importance which Christ placed on simple, lowly acts of service.  I read it all with pleasure, but was stopped in my tracks by this particular sentence (emphasis added):

“Great hours reveal our possibilities;

Common hours reveal our consecration.”

Oh, how I dream of great hours!  I long to do heroic deeds, or at least fill my heart with heroic feelings.  And how I heap disdain on common moments and common tasks!  How easily I convince myself that they don’t matter at all, and that it’s perfectly fine to neglect and waste them altogether.

I want to believe in my possibilities.

God wants my consecration.

Do you want to know how consecrated you are?  How devoted?  How set apart and committed?  Do I want to know this about myself? 

Then you and I need to look at how we approach the commonplace.  As Morrison points out:

"Life is not a little bundle of big things, but a big bundle of little things…And for our Lord the ‘usual’ was the big thing, because the ‘usual’ is nine-tenths of life.”

We love the special “Holy Places” in our lives, the places where God touched us in a special way.  We treasure memories of the times when He met with us almost tangibly.  And it’s right that we should love them.  But if those are the only places and times which we devote to God, then we neglect the great majority of our existence.  We may have consecrated times and places, but we do not have consecrated lives.

Isn’t He with us every moment, even when we don’t know it?

If we can’t feel that He’s there, does His presence matter?

What does King Solomon tell us?

He has made everything beautiful in its time (Ec. 3:11).

How does He do that?

I believe He does it sometimes, to a small degree, during our physical lives.  But mostly this is a promise for that eternal Day in which every moment will unfold itself to reveal new beauties we had not seen before.  And each new beauty will really be an old one, because it will be but another facet of our glorious Lord revealed more fully to us.  Jesus will show us His beautifying touches on every moment of our earthly lives.  When we see His good purpose for our every experience, His faithfulness through our every trial, His presence in our every activity, we will see each moment robed in splendor.  Even a cup of cold water given in His name will shine forever.

Morrison says:

“To neglect the trifle is to miss the triumph.  A tiny snowflake is as exquisitely beautiful as all the splendid pageantry of sunrise.”

Every moment touched by God, no matter how trivial it may seem on this earth, will reveal itself to be as rare and beautiful a masterpiece as the tiny snowflakes He lavishes on us so extravagantly.

Every moment lived for God can be enjoyed, even if it’s also painful, if we truly understand this mystery.  Each second is a gift which flutters past us like snow’s airy crystals, and because we don’t look closely enough, we can’t see the astonishing detail and depth and loveliness of it.

But under the microscope of eternity, what wonders will we see?

Oh Father, help us have eyes to see and ears to hear!  Help us to forget the idea of the “mundane” and the “trivial.”  May we see each moment as an unopened treasure, one which we barely glimpse as it goes by, which is then stored up in Heaven for us to enjoy in its full grandeur for all eternity.  May we offer each moment, even the painful ones, back to You with joyful appreciation for the wonders that they are.  For you are the One who makes everything…even every common hour…beautiful in its time.

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Sherri Ward said...

Such solid teaching in such a poetic fashion - what a talent you have, Betsy! Well done!

Sharlyn Guthrie said...

I love the snowflake analogy in this context. This is so true...and such a beautiful truth, besides.

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