13th August 2015

A God Wedded to Beauty

“Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
Luke 12:27 (NKJV) 

Motoring home after church recently, I was struck by the beauty once again of the English countryside. Normally I avoid the motorways where possible, and the old through routes I use are these days largely left untravelled. And to watch the progression of the seasons is a weekly delight. We began with the snowdrops, even among the snow; moved on to the catkins, waving bravely in the gales of March; and then the bluebells which blanket the forest floors with ethereal blue.  Now we are enjoying the roses.

Such beauty, and automatic. We do nothing to trigger the activity of these plants; it’s all built in and happens sometimes despite adverse weather. Such cyclic design has to come from a Designer who focuses on attention to detail, even in the most trivial of occurrences. Why waste so much design, care and attention on useless flower bulbs? After all, all of the plants mentioned here have no use to mankind. Can’t be eaten; can’t be processed into something of value.

Once again, it shows that our God appears to have designed these plants, and many others, purely for man’s—and his—delight. And what delight it is to walk through a wood covered in English bluebells! We are told in Genesis that God delighted to walk in the garden of Eden in the cool of the evening. Not thinking about food or harvesting, or monetary value, or affairs of the universe, just the sheer delight of the beauty.

That’s our God for you. We’ve kinda high-jacked beauty in this day and age. Our leisure activities usually involve watching TV or videos, even more than listening to radio or records, as was the norm in earlier days.

But make no mistake. Our God hasn’t changed. He still enjoys the beauty he created, nurtured and augmented by man’s hand. I can’t see our God sitting on some heavenly couch watching celestial TV channels with popcorn in one hand and zapper in the other. Now, I’m not suggesting we all need to throw out our TV sets; I enjoy watching snooker and the Tour de France, etc, as do many others, but perhaps we need to curb our watching somewhat, even the uplifting and educational programmes. It’s true you can learn a lot from television, but, like the worldwide web and computers, it can be a fearsome waste of time.

So what’s the alternative? Well, to read books, even theological ones, can be just as worthless, long term. But I suggest all things in moderation is what we should be considering.

Heavenly Father, there are so many distractions available to us in these times. Help us to make the most of our time in keeping you to the forefront of our thinking. And you have given us access to your mind through the pages of your Bible. In Jesus’ name we pray.

Study by John Stettaford


johnstettafordAbout the Author:
John Stettaford is an Elder in the Reading Congregation of the Worldwide Church of God UK.

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God
Reading Prospect School,
6th Form Common Room
Honey End Lane
RG30 4EL

Meeting Ttime:
Saturday 11am

Local Congregational Contact:
John Stettaford
Phone:  01923-241426
Email: pastor@wcg-reading.org.uk