The week after I experienced life changing loss, my children asked me to take care of myself. They suggested I get outside every day and walk to stay in shape, presumably. It turned out to be the best advice I received.
“O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens. Out of the mouth of babies and infants, you have established strength…” Psalm 8:1-2
A side benefit to getting outside was to be reminded of the majesty of God’s creation. Majesty gave me context. Majesty points to a name. Perspective. And out of the mouths of my grown children, God established strength. Why? Because the created order and its beauty is unparalleled. Majestic. And majesty points to a name.
“…everlastingly over the lands and waters of earth, enduing them with forms and colours which no human skill can copy…” John Baillie, A Diary of Private Prayer
When I looked into the sky, I saw the work of God’s fingers. His creative hand is evident. The sun, clouds, moon, stars, trees, lake, mountains, streams, and air were reminders of the Creator. I may be in a tough place, but all of this created beauty was set in place by God. And the majesty points to a name.
“…what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?” Psalm 8:4
Who am I that he would even think of me or care for me? And yet, God has made us to have dominion over all of it. This is a beautiful verse anytime but especially in the face of staggering loss. He is mindful of me. He cares for me. Bank on it. Embrace it. Rest in this truth.
“…you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.” Psalm 8:5
He has made us a little lower than heavenly beings. He is mindful of us, cares for us, and crowns us with glory and honor. Breathtaking. Indeed, majesty gives context to loss of every kind because down here in the temporal stuff of life it’s difficult to see the eternal glory and honor to come. And that majesty points to a name.
“Let me understand the vanity of the temporal and the glory of the eternal…” John Baillie, A Diary of Private Prayer
All creation points to God, but he appoints all creation to be ruled over by us. All sheep, oxen, beasts of the field, birds, and fish are subjected to us. Loss makes you feel out of control, but he has given us dominion over it all. Temporal versus eternal. Powerlessness versus dominion. It’s a mystery; it’s true, but it’s a mystery.
“O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!” Psalm 8:9
Such mystery calls for unhindered worship and trust. David brings Psalm 8 to an end where he began. Full circle. He proclaims to the Lord within the hearing of every reader that his name is majestic in all the earth. Worship, even in devastating loss, is an appropriate response. The majesty of the Lord gives context to every situation, even loss.
The earth is full of majesty. And majesty points to a name.
“You are beautiful beyond description, majesty, enthroned above. And I stand, I stand in awe of You…Holy God, to whom all praise is due, I stand in awe of You.” Mark Altrogge, “I Stand in Awe”