Beholding God’s Beauty
“One thing have I asked of Adonai, that will I seek: to dwell in the House of Adonai all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of Adonai, and to meditate in His Temple.”
How many times has a fantastic sunset made you stop what you were doing to stand and watch it for a moment? Have you ever seen a nature photograph that made you linger over it? Maybe you’ve driven around a curve to discover a spectacular landscape in front of you.
How do you feel and react when you see something extraordinarily beautiful? Does your breath catch, your jaw drop, your eyes tear? Does it leave you momentarily speechless and stunned with awe? Beauty can do this to us. We want to more than see it; we want to behold it – to remain in its presence, taking in as much of it as we can.
Part of David’s longing to dwell in God’s presence was about beholding His beauty. We may not often think of God as beautiful. All-powerful, loving, good and pure, of course, but beautiful? David thought so. And when you think about it, certainly all the world’s beauty sprang forth from the beautiful nature of our Creator God.
Beauty is the love that spurred God to make a way for us to be with Him. Beauty is the grace and mercy that draws us near. Beauty is the God of the universe hearing our prayers, bending down to answer, strengthening and helping us in His great kindness.
How do we behold the beauty of God? By lingering in our praise of Him and meditating on who He reveals Himself to be. Like in the presence of a striking sunset or magnificent view, we let our jaws drop at the overwhelming, beautiful nature of our God.
As we consider what it means to dwell with God during this Sukkot, let’s remember that we live in the presence of His spectacular beauty. One day, however, we will fully see Him – and we won’t be able to contain ourselves at His glorious loveliness. In the meantime, as we wait for that day, let’s behold as much of Him as possible. Let’s fix our gaze on Him, linger long over His beauty and rejoice because of the stunning gift that He has given us – Himself.
“Splendor and majesty are before Him. Strength and beauty are in His Sanctuary.”
Dwelling with God amid COVID-19
It’s hard to believe that so much of the world is still undergoing the changes and restrictions inflicted by COVID-19. As we live in varying degrees of diminished activity and limited social interaction, we may miss some of the things that fill us up and feed our souls. But we can make the most of this unusual time by intentionally looking for beauty, particularly God’s beauty. Look for creative ways to take in more beauty. Browse the internet for beautiful nature photography. Look up the wonders of the world. Gaze out your windows with fresh eyes to spot extraordinary beauty hiding within your everyday view. Go on a hike to breathe in His beauty. Take time to read the Bible and note the qualities of God that are beautiful and lovely. Spend time thanking Him for the beautiful ways He has loved you.