I’m learning slowly to hold the bigness and smallness of God in one hand. Not to confuse SIZE here, but God the Almighty, the one with the Power to create the universe and all that’s in it, and (perhaps even bigger) the Power and Authority to break into my life just to drown my fears with Love… compared with the close intimacy of God living inside me, God being present with me when I hide away from the world, God counting every hair on my head and every tear I’ve shed like we count birthdays, once-in-a-hundred-years earthquakes, and mountain peaks we’ve reached; the Almighty God poured into the tiny and vulnerable human form of a baby.
I find it so incredible just how important God considers me, you, each.single.one of us, yet at the same time we are puny compared to God, smaller than grains of sand pouring through fingers. Have you ever seen sand through a microscope? It’s amazing: shells and rocks in miniature. (see here for Dr Gary Greenberg’s amazing photos.) Maybe that’s how God sees us, tiny, but beautiful and unique, precious and worthy of care, but so easily trampled underfoot unseen, unnoticed.
To have the God of the Universe interested in wooing us, to lavish his Love on us, it’s enough to make me swoon. As if the king of a great nation sought out the lowliest slave girl to make his only son’s bride.
Who are we that this mighty, powerful God should care for us? And yet God does, and more, we are chosen to be Christ’s bride, God’s love poured out until we are full to overflowing, and then poured out more.
Somehow we have to work out how to stand in this place – small and unworthy, yet chosen and Spirit-filled – to hold these two seemingly contradictory images of God together and to base our own identity in them.
Because God has chosen us, we are given a new identity, adopted into royalty when we deserve slavery, to be chosen as the King’s bride, invited to confidently approach the Throne of Grace (see Hebrews 4:16), to have the ear of the Almighty Creator of the Universe.
What privilege! What responsibility!
I’m reminded of the story of Queen Esther who, while her people, the Jews, were in exile, was chosen to marry the king. When her people were threatened with death, she risked her life to approach the king unsummoned and intercede, and the king held out his golden scepter, that she might live and so he could hear her words and the Jews the threat against the Jews was removed. (See the book of Esther for more detail of the story.)
God has permanently extended his golden scepter to us through Jesus Christ, that we might be confident to approach for all our needs and desires. As the Bride of Christ, we are welcome in the throne room, to be in relationship with the King, this is our identity when we live by the Spirit.
It is our task and our gift back to God not to remain in the old, but to life out our lives grounded in this new identity, to live in the fullness God gives us when we live by the Spirit.