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In worship on Sunday, we sang a version of the beloved hymn, Amazing Grace/I’ve Been Set Free and it was wonderful. We’ve sung it before, and I’ve sung the traditional Amazing Grace since I was knee-high to a grasshopper, but for some reason, a part of it that has always been my favorite struck me with even greater force today than before. It’s the verse that says, “When we’ve been there 10,000 years, bright shining as the sun…”
I don’t know why, but for some reason, I pictured my dad while we sang that today. My dad has been “there” over 17 years now. And as we sang today, I pictured my dad bright and shining. It was a wonderful moment for me.
I’m sure that my dad, just as Moses’ face shone after being in God’s Presence for just a short while on Sinai, now glows with the reflected glory of the Lord. And then, I began to wonder what we will look like after we’ve been there 10,000 years. At what point will that glory max out? I don’t think, though I’m not sure, that it will. Consider this verse: 2 Corinthians 3:18 (NIV) – And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
I grant you that I’m not much to look at now. And, quite frankly, neither are you. But can you imagine what we will look like after having been in God’s Presence after 10,000 years, or 100,000 million years – if the glory is ever-increasing?
As CS Lewis put it: There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations – these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit – immortal horrors or everlasting splendors. This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously – no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption.
That brother or sister that you struggle to put up with here – imagine them after 10 billion years of glory is visible on their face. Maybe we’d treat each other better if we did.
PRAYER: Lord, thank You for being generous with Your glory. I pray that even a bit of it might light upon each of us now and that we will see one another as we will be, not as we are. And, Lord, give my dad my regards! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
© 2015, Galen C. Dalrymple.
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