A few weeks ago I saw this video of a puffer fish on facebook. In lieu of a mating dance or glorious plumage, this puffer fish makes a beautiful little sand castle to attract a mate. Look at how cute this little guy is! We’ll get back to him, I promise.
Today in class we began learning about the character and nature of God. I learned that one of my DTS leaders, Johnny Gillespie (who is teaching this week), is as big a nerd as I am! He actually went to school for aeronautical engineering (!!!) and spent a LARGE portion of his lecture today extolling the beauty and vastness of the cosmos, for
Psalm 19: 1 (ESV)
The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
He had me on the edge of my seat with his physics and astronomy talk. (As a note, the image attached to this post is an actual image from the Hubble Telescope of two galaxies colliding!!) We nerded out for about 10 minutes after class was over. It was great. But He talked a lot about how creation reveals to us (a portion of) what God is like. Of course more is revealed in the Word. And even more is revealed through the life of Jesus. But Romans 1 says:
Romans 1: 19, 20 (ESV)
19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
God’s creation (ie, the universe) reveals Him to us. We actually had a ten minute period where we just went outside and looked at nature, and thought about what it showed us about God. In ten minutes I filled half a page in my notebook. God loves LIFE. He is detailed. He could have just made the world beautiful to look at, but it smells good too; plants are soft to the touch; birds fill the air with song. He loves variety. This means so much to me as a human – we are not designed to be the same, but so unique and perfectly placed. He has designed nature to bring out its own beauty. A breeze causes the grass to wave like an ocean of green, and the trees make the same breeze whisper. A vivid green background makes the bright color of a flower pop. Together the effect is so beautiful. God is a good provider; everything has what it needs to thrive. He is an AMAZING designer, engineer, and artist. He’s a better cultivator that we could ever be. (The place that was struggling the most to grow around our tent was a little garden plot someone had made haha.) He meets needs. He cares about the little things; every detail is perfect. He loves beauty and He creates beautiful things. He has SO MUCH DEPTH. Not only is the big picture beautiful, the minutest organism is amazing! He creates things to grow! Nothing starts out fully formed, they grow and get more beautiful with time.
Ten minutes, guys! All that from just sitting and enjoying nature and seeing God in it for ten minutes. We were encouraged to spend time just appreciating the love God revealed to us through nature throughout the day today, and boy, do I feel beloved.
Ok, back to our pufferfish friend. He spent so much time putting together his masterpiece to attract his little lady friend. He crafted something beautiful to woo her. Guys, God created the universe to win us over with a display of His love. He flung trillions of galaxies, each containing billions or trillions of stars across an incomprehensible expanse of space for us. Do you realize that we didn’t know the vast majority of these galaxies existed until recently? The Hubble Telescope revealed previously unimagined multitudes. God put those here for US. For THIS generation. No one else even knew they were there! Do you feel loved yet? Look out the window. He paints the sky every morning and every evening for us. He filled the earth with vivid plants and flowers for us. Have you ever gotten a bouquet? He gave us a world of them. He put fish in the oceans, animals on the land, birds in the sky for us. Everything around us screams “Look at me! I’m showing you how beloved you are!!” If ever there was an extravagant mating dance, if ever anyone went out of His way to win the affection of His beloved, it was God for us.
All I can say is, I am wooed. I’ve been won over. Heart captured. Attention riveted. I hope you all feel as loved as I do tonight.