Dwell on these words. Really let them sink into your heart.
That’s what I have been doing for the few weeks since I read them. I wrote them in my sketch book. I have looked at them, played with them, and created with them.
Anything you want to know intimately requires time. This is true of all things. If we want to know a person well, we spend time with them. If we want to know how to play a musical instrument well, we practice. If we want to know how to take photos, we spend many hours shooting and learning.
If we want to know God’s Word, we must spend time with it. For the past four years, I have been intentional with daily time in the Word. I have read and reread and then reread again. I want to know it well.
As much as I know and understand the importance of knowing God’s Word as a unified whole, I also see the need for me to know its individual parts. To spend time with them. To be acquainted with them.
And that is why I have been writing God’s Word. Each day I take time to grab some pens and my sketch journal and look at the words intently, individually. I write them, letting their weight fall in different places. I roll the words over my tongue, my hands, and my heart. I want to be intimate with the Word of God. When 1800+ languages don’t have a single word of Scripture in their own language, how can I not show my gratitude for God’s Word by spending time with it?
Back to a few weeks ago.
I read this verse. I wrote it down. I looked at it over and over. And I let it sink in.
This verse says that ALL THINGS are of Him. This means that ALL THINGS come from God. The things in the natural world, things manmade, things created and evolved and changed. ALL THINGS are of God. Without Him, nothing would be here.
This also means that ALL THINGS within us are of Him. Our personality, our gifts, our talents, our resources, our time, our health, our children, our dreams, our problems, our trials, our successes…ALL THINGS are of Him. ALL THINGS originate with Him. This is where true humility is birthed. When we recognize that not one thing is of us, only then can we be truly humble. We can’t let ourselves be fooled into thinking we did anything. The hard work that brought us success, even that is of God. The intelligence that brought you opportunities, even that is of God. The hours studying or practicing or preparing, even those are of God.
Not only are ALL THINGS of God, but also ALL THINGS are through God. Not one thing comes to you without it first going through God. Think of all you have: your house, your cars, your kids, your job, your friends, your time, your money. ALL THINGS come from Him and through Him. It ALL passes through the hands of God. You have it because He allowed it. This is also true of the things you do, all the successes you have, all the trials you encounter. They are from Him and they go through Him. Nothing goes from here to there without God being the middle man (and the beginning man and ending man, as we shall see.)
ALL THINGS are of God. They are through God. And they are to God. ALL THINGS we do or give or perform or build or create or dream or execute aren’t to anyone but God. I don’t use my gifts for others, they are for God. I don’t do my duties for others, I do them for God. And I don’t give to others, I give to God. ALL THINGS are to Him.
That’s why we can give a little one a drink of cold water and have it count as love toward God. That’s how we can do all things for the glory of God.
For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ —Matthew 25:35-40
How—if we truly let these words permeate our hearts—can we not be changed? In our thinking? In our doing? In our giving? In our loving? In our grieving?
All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being —John 1:3
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. —James 1:17
Yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him. —1Corinthians 8:6
For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. —Colossians 1:6
You alone are the LORD. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you. —Nehemiah 9:6
What do you have that you did not receive? —1 Corinthians 4:7