When it comes to acknowledging the work of the hands our our Creator there are times when we take the obvious for granted. Too often we become so consumed with the distractions of the world that we forget the many evidences of grace. There are many things we can consider in order to praise God but there are three that we will be focusing on. Praise for the creation in the beginning, praise for the creation in the future and praise for the creation within us.
Praise for His Creation in the Beginning
In Genesis 1:1-3 the opening scene of the creation unfolds with: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void or a waste and emptiness, and darkness was upon the face of the deep. The Spirit of God was moving (hovering, brooding) over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.” When we consider the universe that surrounds us, the variety of plant, animal and human life, we are provided with ample reasons to praise the God of creation. He moved upon the surface of chaos and established heavenly order which testifies of the principles of the divine kingdom. Not only did He create but He sustains sustain. Hebrews 1:3 tells us that He upholds “all things by the word of His power…” As the Holy Spirit moved through the darkness upon the face of the waters back then, so He moves upon the darkness of human hearts to shine the light of the grace of heaven. As He sustains the universe by the power of His word, so He is able to sustain us as we commit ourselves to do His will.
Praise for His Creation in the Future
Many of us enjoy receiving an advance check for labour we have yet to do. How about we learn to praise God in advance for He promises to come.
Our journey here on earth is only for a short time but this is not our end. The prophet Isaiah and apostle John were given the assurance of the upcoming creation.
“Behold, I am creating new heavens and a new earth; and the former things [of life] will not be remembered or come to mind.” Isaiah 65:17 Notice the word “behold” which has to do with fixing our attention on.
This is a thought that should be part of our daily focus. Children understand this very well. When given something to look forward to (like a new toy or an exciting trip) they tend to keep it in their mind (and yours too) until it happens. With eager excitement they count down until the fulfillment of the promise. We can learn much from children regarding this. According to John 14:2 Jesus said “ In My Father’s house are many dwelling places. If it were not so, I would have told you, because I am going there to prepare a place for you.” While a place in eternity is being prepared for us, we are being prepared for eternity.
Praise for His Creation in Believers
Look within. Do you notice anything that needs to be changed that no one but God can help you with? His creation was not just in beginning nor is it only reserved for the future. The ongoing creation deserving of our praise is that which is taking place within us. The psalmist understood this when he wrote the words: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right and steadfast spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10 In the book of Jeremiah the question and answer echoes the previous verse: “Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots? Then you also can do good. Who are accustomed to evil and even trained to do it. Jeremiah 13:23. Although we may have a desire to do good, to break an addiction, an unhealthy pattern and overcome sin, the truth is the power to do so comes from God.
In John 3:3,4 it says: “…I assure you and most solemnly say to you, unless a person is born again [reborn from above—spiritually transformed, renewed, sanctified], he cannot [ever] see and experience the kingdom of God. Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter his mother’s womb a second time and be born, can he?” The answer to Nicodemus’ question is the same as it was in the beginning; by allowing the Holy Spirit to move upon the surface (an in the depths in this case) of our hearts. Being born again, receiving a clean heart and learning to do good is an act of creation from God alone. Although we sometimes are oblivious to the change that is taking place within us, it is impossible to behold the character of the God through Christ and not be transformed into His image. “If anyone is in Christ they will be a new creation, old things pass away and all will become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
To know God as creator is to trust Him as designer of our paths, sustainer of our souls and deliverer from our sins. He alone created in the beginning. He alone promises to create in the future for the sake of living at peace with His followers and He alone transforms our hearts into His own. As we meditate on these things, praise to His name will be our natural response along with obedience to His word, laws and will.