January 17, 2017
By the way, you can thank me any time you want… seriously. A personal “thanks” is nice. Money is always accepted. A card is thoughtful. Stuffed cabbage… well the ultimate “thank you,” of course. Any of the above or some other form of gratitude will be humbly received. Oh, I’m sorry! What are you thanking me for? Well, that’s easy. 8 weeks ago, I bought a snow blower. Yeah that’s right… a big boy, honest to goodness, manly… snow blower. Not one of those sissy “snow displacers” with an anemic 5 horse power engine. Nope, I got the 8 horse, electric start. I don’t want to blow snow into my neighbor’s yard… I want to blow it into the park down the street. Yesiree Bob… now all I need is some snow. You get it? See what’s going on here? It’s the middle of January… where the heck is the snow?!
Two weeks ago we had an inch of snow. One measly inch! I was sorely tempted… I really was. But even in my frothing snow blowing state of mind, I could see the overkill. I didn’t want the neighbors laughing at me either: “Look at the minister… what a moron.” I’m being toyed with. The weather gods are laughing at me.
Now truth be told, I have never, ever used a snow blower. Well okay, that’s not entirely accurate… I used one that someone gave me for the whole 5 minutes that it ran before it turned into junk. I have never experienced the glory of being the monarch of my own clean, snow barren driveway… Well, at least without being drenched in sweat and heaving for breath. I can only imagine the overwhelming emotion that will accompany exposed black top and the mountains of cold white stuff that I personally throw out of place. Ha… I will be THE MAN! The king of my domain. I’m pretty sure my expectations are not over blown. Get it? “Over blown.” Get it? I kill myself!
So what does this have to do with religious stuff anyway? Hmmmm… Where was I going with this!? Oh yeah, I remember – Glory! You can see the obvious connection right?
The word “glory” in various forms is used close to 400 times in the Bible. In the Old Testament, it comes from a word that literally means “heavy, weighty”, or as we might say “worthiness.” In other words, when used to describe God or Jesus (the primary subjects in the Bible), it means “one of significance or ‘worth’.” A few verses to consider:
Exodus 15:11 Who among the gods is like you, Lord? Who is like you— majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?
Exodus 24:17 To the Israelites the glory of the Lord looked like a consuming fire on top of the mountain.
Exodus 40:35 Moses could not enter the tent of meeting because the cloud had settled on it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle.
Psalm 3:3 But you, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high.
Psalm 24:7-8 Lift up your heads, you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.
Psalm 66:2 Sing the glory of his name; make his praise glorious.
Matthew 16:27 For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done.
Luke 9:26 Whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.
Acts 7:55 But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.
Experiencing the Glory of God is not necessarily… um… desirable. If you remember when Moses was on the mountain, God told him to hide as His Glory passed by lest he die. Ultimately Moses was blinded by God’s Glory. Glory can be a fierce thing. And yet it is THE thing we ultimately long for. We live… or shall I say die… to see the Glory of God; the worthiness of the King of Kings; the Holiness of the One who did not consider equality with God something to be held onto but allowed Himself to be a man and ultimately to die for me… (Philippians 2)… that Glorious One!
You may have some pretty difficult things to deal with today or this week, or maybe not. Can I ask that sometime in the midst of your life in the not too distant future you might… contemplate, meditate on and consider what it means that “your God is Glorious.” Because if your God is not “glorious” then he, she, or it is hardly worth the time.