3 When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers—Psalm 8, verses 3 and 4; from the New Living Translation (NLT)
the moon and the stars you set in place—
4 what are mere mortals that you should think about them,
human beings that you should care for them?
“Just who do you think YOU are?” Ever said that to someone, or at least thought these words? Usually these words are uttered at someone who has an over-inflated ego; someone who believes they are right and you are wrong. Unfortunately, there seems to be a lot of folks afflicted with that over-inflated ego in my Tribe, the United Methodist Institution, especially within much of the U.S. leadership. These knuckleheads (forgive me Lord, for I just sinned–but truth is truth!) believe they know more about God than most folks–even more than the Bible. But I’m digressing from this morning’s thoughts.
As I was sitting on our front porch, listening to my worship music, I looked up at the stars. I do this as a response to my morning worship and conversations with The Spirit. And as I was star gazing, Psalm 8 just smashed me flatter than a squirrel on an Alabama road. “Just who am I? Randy Burbank? Preacherman?” Well, I’m 66 years old. Born, raised, and live in the garden place of the world, Alabama! Married to the most wonderful wife a man could ever have. I have children, grandchildren, and a great-grandson. And I just preached twice yesterday. But still, that doesn’t answer that deeper question: “Who am I?”
In that moment, gazing upwards (is that coincidence?) I was blown out of the water! And I understood David’s Psalm 8 deeper than I ever had before. I am made in God’s image so that I may help tend to God’s creation–and fellow image bearers! Even though I’ve messed up more times than anyone can count–that image remains in me. Therefore, I can’t boast about it. Because I’m not all the titles I wear nor the things I do. I am who God says I am. When He says I’ve sinned, well, I’ve sinned. And when He calls me His son–I’m that, too.
As I try to scrap this flattened squirrel off the road, I am reminded that it’s all because of His amazing grace! Though unworthy–but by following, learning, and applying all that The Spirit is trying to teach me–I am being transformed back into my original design. And I just remembered Who I Am: I am His and I am nothing without Him! If you haven’t tried it lately, try being humble and humbled in the Presence of God. It will give you the perspective you need for today–and for the rest of your life!