I’ve just had such a short fuse lately, but it is always unpredictable when it will blow. That is really fun for my children and husband. Hmm, the cereal spilled all over the table, chair, floor and school clothes didn’t phase her but it was that third time asking people to get their teeth brushed that detonated the crazy mom bomb. As a kid, I was known for my red faced laughter. I fear my kids will just know me for my grumpy, irritable bossiness. So I started thinking about it more, about how I got this way and why. Maybe it is because I don’t feel like I am accomplishing much in my current “job” or maybe it is because motherhood is filled with more conflict than accolades. Maybe it is because my whole view of significance and value needs to be challenged or maybe I’m depressed or maybe…and then, thank you Jesus, the Gospel didn’t leave me in my analysis for too long.
And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” Is. 6:3
Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying: “‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come.” Rev. 4:8
Ok, so, shot in the dark here…those worshipping God in these verses probably weren’t overly concerned about their role in His Kingdom, their value as creatures, the significance of their individual voices in these choruses and so on. I wasn’t there, but I’m also willing to bet that they weren’t preoccupied with critical thoughts of the volume or tones of the voices of the other worshippers. My guess is that they were, are and will be so entirely absorbed in the awesomeness of God’s glory and presence and character and being that there just wasn’t and isn’t space or interest in sidelong glances or self-assessments.
Here is what Ed Welch wrote about Isaiah’s response to being in the throne room: “Then Isaiah did what anybody would do in such a situation. He forgot about himself and offered himself as a servant to the living God. His fear of the Lord was expressed by reverential obedience. This is one of the great blessings of the fear of the Lord. We think less often about ourselves. When a heart is being filled with the greatness of God, there is less room for the question, ‘What are people going to think of me?'” (p119, When People are Big and God is Small)
I might get that first part, sometimes, but then I immediately wonder what people think about my servantness or my offering of myself as a servant. It isn’t just as general as that, but more specifically, do they see it’s value? Do they appreciate the full context of the story? Do they comprehend the dynamics at play in my heart? Do they know my sacrifice? And what do you know, my moment in the throne room is quickly forgotten and I’m right back on the throne at the center of my story again.
I can only return to such concern over my dignity and other people’s acknowledgment of it when I have lost sight of God’s holiness, righteousness and perfections and begun to overestimate my own. What then is my hope for change? The very One who gives sight to my blind and failing eyes, will continue to redirect my focus from that which is perishing to the only treasure which will never spoil, perish or fade away.
One thing I, even I, am he who comforts you.
Who are you that you fear mere mortals, human beings who are but grass,
that you forget the LORD your Maker,
who stretches out the heavens and who lays the foundations of the earth,
that you live in constant terror every day
because of the wrath of the oppressor, who is bent on destruction?
For where is the wrath of the oppressor?
The cowering prisoners will soon be set free;
they will not die in their dungeon, nor will they lack bread.
For I am the LORD your God, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar—
the LORD Almighty is his name.
I have put my words in your mouth and covered you with the shadow of my hand—
I who set the heavens in place, who laid the foundations of the earth,
and who say to Zion, ‘You are my people.’ Is. 51:12-16
I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple. Psalm 27:4