DayBreaks for 5/16/16 – The Shining Face of God
NOTE: Galen will be out of the office and traveling next week.
From the DayBreaks archive, May 2006:
Psalms 67:1-2 (NIV) – May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine upon us, Selah that your ways may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations.
Scripture speaks in several places about the face of God. We read it, but miss the tremendous meaning behind the face of God shining on us. Let’s take a moment and consider what it means:
- A baby finds affirmation in the face of the parent or sibling. They like to see that smiling face above their crib, and they soon learn that if they do the right things, they bring delight to the face of the one watching, which in turn, brings delight back to the baby – they smile, laugh, and coo in response. They also eventually learn to recognize the displeasure in the face, too, when they do wrong. We find affirmation or judgment (not sure that’s the right word to use there) in the face of the Father. When we bring Him joy by our actions, we are filled with joy in response.
- The astounding, underlying fact is that this says that God pays attention to us. When we see someone’s face, they can see ours. To turn our face to someone is to give them our undivided attention, to look them in the face and be joined with them in some form of intimate connection. As the Psalmist elsewhere says, What is man that You are mindful of him? Or the son of man that Thou should visit him?” It is a wonder that God should direct his face, his attention, to us.
- But it goes far beyond that. It says that God makes his face to “shine” upon us. This is the face of a beaming, tickled-pink, proud parent. A baby’s first laugh, first crawling, first steps, first soccer goal, piano recital…and the list goes on…all these things make a parent’s face beam with delight and joy. Like a groom’s face when he sees his bride appear at the end of the aisle, so God’s face beams when His gaze falls upon us – and the best thing is that His gaze is always steadily fixed upon us, never wavering!
Throughout his life, Jesus seemed to see things that the rest of us miss: the lilies of the field, a man sitting up in the branches of a sycamore tree, the blind beggar sitting by the side of the road that we’d told Jesus SAW, the possibility of a man who was more like a pile of sand being turned into a ROCK, the day when the tombs would be opened and the dead would rise. Jesus sees with God’s eyes. He sees US with God’s eyes. And his face beams!
I need to take more time to try to focus on how God sees me in Christ. I need to believe that He takes delight in ME, not just in the Mother Theresa’s or Billy Graham’s of the world. And I need to learn to let his face shine not only upon me, but through me – that I can see others as Jesus did.
PRAYER: Almighty God – how awesome it is to think that you see us with delight. When our hearts are weighed down with our guilt, shame and when we look in the mirror and are disgusted by what we see, let us hear your voice of delight, and see your face of approval and love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.