The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"Gifts and Givers"
When looking at a manmade object, be it a work of art, technology, edifice, food, or clothing, we often express an incomplete admiration.
"What a beautiful painting! What an amazing device! What an incredible building! What a delicious meal! What a lovely dress!"
Certainly, all of these appreciations and countless others have their proper place in our acknowledgements. However, if we forget the makers of the things we admire, we neglect to fully experience the good they bring. Things do not appear out of thin air. Somebody - usually many somebodies - must apply heart, mind, and hand to produce the things we enjoy. We thus do well to admire the imaginers, designers, and makers of things no less than their products.
You see where this is headed.
"They worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed forever, Amen" (Romans 1:).
The current of missing the Maker runs deep in the human psyche. From the creation of Eve for Adam, when the first man failed to express acknowledgement and gratitude to God for the sublime gift of his wife, our native tendency leads us to focus on the wonders of creation rather than the wonder of the Creator. Again, it is absolutely proper to appreciate "the things that are made" (Roman 1:20). Viewed in the light of truth, they distinctly reflect the heart and hand of God.
"The invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and godhead" (Romans 1:20).
God desires that we enjoy His blessings - "He...giveth us richly all things to enjoy" (I Timothy 6:17). We do well to rejoice in the tangible blessings He conveys. However, a beautiful sunrise admired without remembering the One who made the sun denotes our tendency to miss the most important feature of all beauty, craft, design, and ability. I like to say it this way: "My Father made that!" More to the point, I like to make it personal and pray it this way: "Heavenly Father, You made that, and I praise, thank, and rejoice in You and the glory of Your heart, mind, and hand!"
I'll close with an illustration. Before writing this, I partook of the most delicious pumpkin pie in the world, made by my daughter Emmie. Nobody makes this delicacy like she does - I will hear no arguments in the matter! :) - and eating the pie provided a culinary marvel to my tastebuds. However, if I fail to remember its maker, I fail to truly appreciate the full blessing of the blessing. I try not to do that. Emmie's pumpkin pie is all the more wonderful because she prepared it, and because she did so from the love of her heart for her family. This leads to an even further and deeper appreciation because God made Emmie, He made the components for pumpkin pie, and He gave her the knowledge, wisdom, and art to produce it. So, I especially try to not forget that "every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights" (James 1:17).
We miss so much when we focus only on the gifts of life, forgetting that blessings do not simply appear out of thin air. Somebody imagines, designs, and makes them, beginning with God Himself, and then with the human hearts, minds, and hands that serve as the means through which He bestows "every good gift and every perfect gift." Yes, we do well to remember, "My Father made that!" And we do well to make it personal, "Heavenly Father, You made that and I praise, thank, and rejoice in You!"
"For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory forever. Amen."
Weekly Memory Verse
I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be forever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before Him."