Saturday, January 12, 2013

Piper Got It Right

Peg and I have a little ritual we do around Christmas time. We hop in the car one evening and spend an hour or two, riding around and looking at Christmas lights on folks' houses in Pelham and Alabaster. We've probably done that for 15 or 20 years, and maybe more.

We used to hang a lot of outside lights on our house. I think there were something like 2,000. We'd accumulated quite a number of strings, several different types, and I draped them over the roof, back & forth from the front walkway deck to the front gutters, some around shrubs, etc. We had different kinds of strings, some flashed, some just were on, some had patterns, etc. It was quite a sight, and some nights, folks would stop out front in their cars and just look at them a while.

Eventually, though, I got tired of  climbing around on the roof and edging up to the guttering to hang them, and one year I just stopped putting the stuff up. That was probably 15 years ago, if not more.

This year, our grandson Matthew got married, and he & Kami bought their first house. Some time early in December, he asked what we'd done with all the lights, so Peg dug them all up and gave them to him. Well, except for the string she's been hanging on a beam on the back deck, which we can see from the living room.

Like, we don't care about the public any more, but we do like to see those lights ourselves. From inside.

Anyway, on Christmas eve we got into the car and headed out to see the lights again this year. Peg said she wanted to go see Matthew & Kami's first, so we drove straight to Alabaster.

That's their house, and the lights, in the picture.

We sat and enjoyed the view for a few minutes, and then a funny thing happened, At least to me. I didn't want to see any other lights on houses. I wanted Matthew & Kami's house to be the prettiest one I saw all month. It was. And we drove straight back home. I guess you can tell we're proud grandparents.

But that also brought something else to mind .. something John Piper had said in a video I'd seen a couple of times. He stated:

"God is most glorified in us, when we are most satisfied in Him."

Wow. I have heard people talk for years about doing this or that, or building this or that, to glorify God. And, when I did, I thought it was ludicrous that we could do something that would glorify, or bring glory to, God. Us mere mortals enhancing the glory of God, Who is glorious beyond description. 

Well, I think John Piper figured it out. 

We could never build a building tall enough or big enough or splendid enough to add one whit to the unspeakable glory of the God Who spoke the universe into existence. We could never write or perform a song sufficiently beautiful to enhance His majesty. It is already infinite in scope and splendor. And the closest we can come to bringing Him glory is to simply acknowledge Him for Who and what He is, and be completely satisfied in our souls, with His revelation of that to us. 

I don't want to need anything external to enhance His beauty and His majesty and His glory. I want to be completely satisfied in Him, as He is. To the extent that I can comprehend that.

It's a little like Matthew & Kami's house. I don't want to see anything better. But with God, I don't even want to want anything better.

Besides, there isn't.

  

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