Chapter 1: A Man and Creation
NOTE: In conjunction with the release of my new book, A Man’s Guide to the Spiritual Disciplines, I am going to publish an excerpt or two from each chapter.
What’s the best way to observe God in creation? Is it to gaze upon the beauty of creation? Should we look with amazement at man himself, created in God’s image? Or can we stand in awe of the accomplishments of men and women? After all, people have built skyscrapers, airplanes, spaceships, televisions, telephones, and computers. They’ve explored new lands, naming and listing a host of animals and plants. They’ve found miracle medical cures. The list could go on and on. So, which more clearly reveals God –raw nature, man, or man’s work?
Okay – this is a trick question, because the answer is – we can see God in all three places. This is a powerful truth, because it frees us from the tendency to segment our lives into “Christian” and “secular” categories. We don’t have to live in a world where Bible study is “Christian,” therefore “good,” and work is “secular,” therefore “bad.” Everything God made is good. First, God reveals himself in creation. Second, He reveals Himself through His reflection in mankind. And third, He reveals himself through our accomplishments as well.…
Pursue God’s Creation by Observing His Human Creation
Beyond raw nature and man’s work lies the wonder of how God has handcrafted people. Who doesn’t admire a beautiful woman or a handsome man? We love to recognize and reward human achievement. We have Emmys, Oscars, Tonys, and People’s Choice awards. We can’t wait to celebrate the athletic exploits of people like Lance Armstrong and Jeff Gordon and to present Espys to outstanding athletes.
One man may not appear very talented when compared to another man, but both will appear quite talented when compared to a rabbit or a dancing bear. The least human being is infinitely more interesting than the highest beast in creation. Every human being – whether beautiful, or talented, or athletic – is part of the creation and, when pondered, can turn our thoughts to the greatness of God….
Suggestions for How to Use This Information
1. If applicable, discuss this article with your fiancé, wife and/or family. Ask, “What’s your favorite way to observe God in creation?”
2. In your small group discuss these questions (or invite a few men to get together and discuss the article and these questions):
- What are the three ways of observing God in creation mentioned in this article?
- What’s your favorite way to observe God in creation?
- “The least human being is infinitely more interesting than the highest beast in creation.” AGREE/DISAGREE. What are the implications?
3. For yourself, try this suggested spiritual exercise:
- Sit quietly in a quiet room at a quiet time of the day.
- Become aware of everything in the room — the noises, the silence, the creaks, the wind outside or lack of it, a draft, the humidity, the temperature, your body, the furniture, the light, each chair, fabric, texture, color, and how these things make you feel.
- Consider what else is in the room that you cannot see — radio waves, TV waves, microwaves, cellular phone conversations, Internet transmissions.
- Next become aware of the Spirit of God in the room, in the same sense that He was always there even when you were not focused on Him.
- Pray, “Jesus, I know that you are right here with me. May I sense your presence.”
For the glory of Christ and no other reason,
Pat Morley, Ph.D.