Do you ever find yourself singing during worship, but not really being engaged with it? I do love the well-known hymns and songs, but sometimes their very familiarity can allow me to ‘zone out’ unintentionally, as I can sing the words from memory without having to engage my brain. This was happening to me the other day when we were singing the fantastic old hymn When I survey the wondrous cross, by Isaac Watts.
The last verse says: ‘Were the whole realm of nature mine, that were an offering far too small. Love so amazing, so divine demands my soul, my life, my all.’ My mind wandered a little and I thought, well the whole realm of nature is not mine, so I could never give the whole realm of nature to anyone. However, it is God’s, so God could, couldn’t He?
And then a little light bulb came on in my mind. He did! God did give us the whole realm of nature as a gift, an offering of love from Him to us. What a fabulous gift that was, all the stunning beauty, the tremendous variety of plants and animals, mountains and lakes, sunsets and storms! People spend their whole lives admiring and studying it.
But then God said to Himself something like this: “The whole realm of nature is mine, but that gift is far too small as an expression of my heart. My love, so amazing, so divine demands that I give them my soul, my life, my all.” And so, He did! He came into our world as a tiny baby and gave us Himself. He showed us His love in action, in the flesh. And He even gave His very life on the cross for us.
God isn’t a demanding person, asking for more and more all the time. Far from it! He is a giver. He gives and gives and gives. The whole realm of nature wasn’t enough to satisfy His desire to give to you. He gave Himself, His life, His all.
Prayer: O Lord our God, how majestic is Your name in all the earth! How glorious is the gift of Your creation in nature! But how much more personal and generous was Your indescribable gift of Yourself in Jesus. Thank You! Amen.
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