One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.
I can only imagine the feeling of seeing the Sistine Chapel for the first time (or really...any time!). Even if you had no art background whatsoever, you couldn't help but be amazed. Art has a way of inspiring us, transporting us, and leaving us in a state of awe. So often it is an almost "religious" experience (excuse the cliche use of the religious..but it seemed fitting). I remember the first time I saw a Van Gogh in person....it took me to church!! I sat down on a bench across from it, and just sat in its presence. I studied it, watched others view it, and just tried to imprint the moment as to never lose it. I think the Sistine Chapel might just about blow my mind. I think another part of the equation is knowing the artist. You don't have to have an art history background to appreciate it, but knowing the master's hand that painted such an awe inspiring work adds a new layer of depth, understanding, and appreciation.
Do you ever find yourself in awe of God? I think many speak of God being "awesome" or doing "awesome" things, but I'm referring to a deeper recognition of who God is & what He has done in your life. Does our Lord bring you to a place where you just want to linger in His presence? The writer of Psalms 27 asks the Lord if he could dwell in the house of the Lord & gaze at His beauty. When was the last time you wanted to "dwell & gaze" in conjunction with God? In our fast paced world....we don't dwell anywhere well. We are so often rushed & divided that dwelling & gazing sounds like a foreign concept. No body has time for that?!? But you should! If art can bring us to a state of awe & makes us want to linger a little longer...why can't God do the same for us? What do we need to do, change, or incorporate that would bring this about?
If art can bring us to a state of "AWE"...shouldn't God? He is the MASTER ARTIST!
Lord, help me to desire to dwell in Your presence & gaze at Your beauty.
May my life reflect the awe You inspire.
The fast paced, over committed, divided, distracted life we live (even if so much of it is "good" or "good things" must come second to the joy of sitting at your feet.
I want the request of Psalms 27:4 to be my heart, Lord!
In Christ's Name, AMEN
Thank you for sharing. You make an awesome point... we're too figgiddy to sit in awe. I had that same experience at the opening of the Georgia O'keffe museum...I stood in awe, wept even. I get this same feeling with sunsets, God is the Master Creator, but am I too busy to "be still and know that I am God", I hope not. Peace, GabrielleReplyDelete
Wow! That will make me appreciate the little things around me that God provides! Thank you for the time you put into these devotionals.ReplyDelete
Amen. Thank you, Ted!ReplyDelete
Being mindful in our prayer and thankful for the small blessings daily...I cried when I looked up at the Chapel ceiling and my eyes fill with tears remembering the flood of feelings. Have a great day Ted!ReplyDelete
truth! I've been trying to find balance, and take time to dwell in His presence. It certainly isn't easy to find/make time (especially as school is starting up again) to "be still, and know that I am God". Thanks for the good reminder. I find any time I am in nature - I am truly in awe of The Creator - but I want to bring that awe with me even when I am living in my urban existence. This week, as I looked in the faces of my students, I saw Him there, and was in awe, and delighted in His creation anew.ReplyDelete
Well I haven't seen the Sistine Chapel, but I have visited the Haghia Sophia in Istanbul and felt transported by the expansive space. I stood in awe there in the presence of history and what humans are capable of when trying to honor the divine. As an artist, I know my feeble attempts can never match the beauty that was created in the universe, but if I get out of the way in the process, some of that beauty will channel through my hands. Thank you, TedReplyDelete
Great word as always. thanks!ReplyDelete
Many years ago I had the opportunity to visit the Sistine Chapel. Just as you said the emotions that well to the surface are startling and amazing. Not only was there the beautiful art but God's presence could be felt. It took me years and a closer walk with God to understand that. God is in the beauty and in the creation.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much for sharing that!!!!!Delete