Captivated

splendor1

Pure love is rare, isn’t it? On a Sunday morning in June, 1974, I first saw Bev and I was captivated; yes, it was really love at first sight. That love was tainted by self-interest as are all human loves. I found her attractive, interesting, a person who made me feel joyful – and loved her.

Driving through the Rocky Mountains a few years ago, the vistas made me want to pause, to gaze, to feel the wonder of it all. My awe morphed to loving worship for the Creator of it all.

Then, too, I recall being overwhelmed with love in the Church of All Nations which stands at the site of the Garden of Gethsemane on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem where Jesus wrestled with the Father’s will and surrendered Himself to the work of being the sacrifice for the sins of the world! An intense love swept over me, leaving me unable to stand, to speak, with tears of adoration wetting my face.

Let me ask you what I asked myself in my meditation this morning – do you love God for Himself, or for what He can do for you? Are you captivated by the glory of the Divine, enthralled by the grace that invites you to enter His Holy Presence?  Those questions are not easily answered, are they?

If you are like me, some days God is just there, taken for granted even as He gives life and breath, His beauty unseen. Then there are those moments of need when we come to Him, not because we desire Him, but because we want some grace, some blessing, some remedy. I do not want to imply that we should not pray about our needs. Our Father invites us to come and to present our needs to Him.

We also can learn to love Him- not for what He does, nor for what we need, but for Who He is!  “The study of God is simply to be enjoyed for its own incomparable subject, the One most beautiful, most worthy of praise. Life with God delights in its very acts of thinking, reading, praying, and communing with the One most worthy to be beheld, pondered, and studied; not for its written artifacts or social consequences, but for joy in its object.”  A Change of Heart, Thomas C. Oden

To be captivated by Him, to see His true beauty, demands something of us. We must come and wait, step aside from the busy pursuits of life, enter into His Presence. Imagine going to visit a gallery filled with the works of master artists only to rush through, glancing at the time constantly, pressing towards the exit. Would you really appreciate the beauty of the art on display? Of course not, right?  Those masterpieces require time, a pause, focus, perhaps an interpreter who provides the information needed to see why the work is so admirable.

Similarly, we need to create time to come and see the beauty of the Lord. Each day we can focus on Him, listening, waiting, learning, loving. The invitation into worship with His Church is an intentional pause in the rush of the week, a holy time when we come to offer ourselves to Him and, hopefully, to see Him in His beauty. Will you?

This word from the Word is almost incomprehensible for a majority of people, consumed with life, their minds and hearts packed so full of trivia and trinkets that there is no room for real Treasure. I pray for you that these words will invite you to ponder the Majesty and be captivated by a pure love for the Holy One.

“A psalm of David.
Honor the Lord, you heavenly beings; honor the Lord for his glory and strength.
Honor the Lord for the glory of his name.
Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.

The voice of the Lord echoes above the sea. The God of glory thunders.
The Lord thunders over the mighty sea.
The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is majestic.
The voice of the Lord splits the mighty cedars;
the Lord shatters the cedars of Lebanon.

He makes Lebanon’s mountains skip like a calf; he makes Mount Hermon leap like a young wild ox.
The voice of the Lord strikes with bolts of lightning.
The voice of the Lord makes the barren wilderness quake; the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
The voice of the Lord twists mighty oaks and strips the forests bare.

In his Temple everyone shouts, “Glory!” (Psalm 29:1-9, NLT)

_______________

I Stand In Awe

You are beautiful beyond description
Too marvelous for words
Too wonderful for comprehension
Like nothing ever seen or heard
Who can grasp Your infinite wisdom
Who can fathom the depth of Your love
You are beautiful beyond description
Majesty enthroned above

 And I stand I stand in awe of You
I stand I stand in awe of You\
Holy God to whom all praise is due
I stand in awe of You

Mark Altrogge © 1987 Sovereign Grace Praise (Admin. by Sovereign Grace Ministries)

CCLI License # 810055

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