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On Eden and Glory

I've wanted to post more and have lots of jumbled thoughts on grief, grace, disability, and living a new normal, but whenever I have some free time (haha!) my pillow beckons me and I don't get around to writing the things I want to remember. 

So today I'm posting something that Don wrote the day that Eden had her surgery. He was helping me think through how God is using her life and the good that is coming of it, even if it ends up being short or marked by suffering. I'm posting this today mainly because I needed to remember this today.


Earlier today while Eden was having surgery Sara asked me how Eden's life is giving God glory. I did a little writing to clarify my own thoughts on this, and I thought I'd share it with you all. 

We can't and never will never know all that God means to accomplish in and through Eden's life. We see things from one little angle. We have a limited perspective. God is infinite in wisdom; he sees the whole picture with perfect clarity. "In his sight all things are open and manifest, his knowledge is infinite" WCF. His wisdom sometimes appears mysterious to us because we only see a small slice of reality.  So we can't know all that God is accomplishing. But we can know a little bit about what he's doing. We can know that he's glorifying himself in the following ways.

1) "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich" (2 Cor. 8:9). Though he was rich, he became poor. This is the gospel. Sara and I are rich -- rich in health, rich in energy, rich in resources. Eden is poor. Our glad giving of our riches to care for the poor is a reflection of the gospel. That we didn't end Eden's life like the doctor wanted us to, but are instead giving of ourselves to care for her is a reflection of the very heart of Christ. God is glorified in this. The angels are watching this. 

2) Scripture tells us that when we serve others we should do so "as one who serves by the strength that God supplies--in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ."  God has shown himself to be abundantly sufficient as we seek to care for Eden. "I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me" (Phil 4:12-13). The sufficiency, grace, comfort, and power that Sara and I have been given these past two weeks does not come from ourselves. It comes from God. In this he is glorified. 

3) Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness" (Gen. 1:26). Eden has worth because she was made in the image of God. In stark contrast to the mindset of the world, Eden's worth does not increase or decrease based upon her ability to contribute or give back. Her worth is fixed because she is a "little god" -- made in the very image of God. It is from his worth that she derives her worth. Our love for this little one made in God's image honors the worth of God himself. It says something to the watching world about God's glory. God is glorified in this.

4) Prayers, compassion, gifts, visits, help, support, kindness have flowed to us from Christ's body, the church. Because of Eden's life, the beauty of the church has shined to the glory of God. God is honored and glorified by this. 

5) Eden's sufferings, which are causing all of this glory to go to God, will be abundantly rewarded on the final day. "For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison" (2 Cor 4:17). If much glory is going to God as a result of one of his children's suffering, God will most certainly richly reward that suffering. Therefore, in that day, when God anoints Eden with immortality and everlasting beauty, God himself will be seen to be abundantly gracious and generous as he rewards Eden far far beyond what her suffering deserves. Her beauty is diminished here; her radiance will be the brighter there. "The sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us" (Rom. 8:18). When we see the glory that God bestows upon Eden, it will result in the "praise of his glorious grace." He will be glorified.

1 comment:

Ruth said...

Don and Sara Thank you for the clear reminder of how limited our view is when we try to understand our God and what the bigger picture is. Praying He will strengthen and encourage you each day with exactly what you need.