To Infinity & Beyond
One of the questions every kid gets tired of being asked is, “So what are you going to be when you grow up?” Every young child certainly has dreams and fancies of where life would take them, but the constant inquiring of this subject can grow quite wearisome. Nonetheless, if you were to posture this question to any young girl or boy, you’d get a spattering of responses, from a Disney Princess, to a cowboy, to an athlete, to a doctor, to whatever. But one response you’ll surely get is, “Astronaut!”
There’s something uniquely intriguing and perplexing about space that drives mankind for answers. The idea of “new worlds” and “new civilizations” and unexplored frontiers and “boldly going where no one has gone before” titillates everyone’s curiosity, which is why science fiction movies continue to do well at the box office. But, one of the ironies is that even with all that we’ve accomplished in space travel and exploration, we’re still fairly clueless as to how and why everything works. Man likes to think he has things figured out. In all his finite intellect, he’s deemed he’s conquered Earth, now all that’s left is the final frontier. And with all the theories and all the ideas about black holes and distant galaxies and supernovas and gigantic nebula, the common trait among us should be that we don’t really know much. In fact, one of the oldest books in your Bible contains an awe-inspiring verse that should make us realize how small we are: “Behold, these are but the outskirts of his ways, and how small a whisper do we hear of him! But the thunder of his power who can understand?” (Job 26:14)
With all that we’ve “figured out” and concluded about our planet, our galaxy, and the rest of the universe, we’ve only seen the “outskirts” of God’s ways, merely the fringes of his power. All the beauty we can behold is but a whisper of his majesty, a small twinkling of light of his glory. “You have set your glory above the heavens.” (Ps. 8:1) We know of the constellations and the billions of stars that make up our own galaxy. We know of the millions of other galaxies that we’ve been made privy, all teeming with God’s awesome power and majesty put beautifully on display. Yet these, what we can observe, are only “the extremities, the edges, the borders, and outlines of the ways and works of God in creation and providence.” Therefore, we must ask along with John Gill, “if these were so great and marvellous, what must the rest be which were out of the reach of men to point out and describe?” What must those other worlds and other solar systems be like? How much greater would they show the magnificent splendor of God’s creating-voice?
But the most important question this should spawn in us is this: How could the Creator, Designer, and Sovereign Ruler of all these galaxies and systems and stars and the entire universe, care for and love me? Indeed, we should all ask in chorus with the psalmist, “When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?” (Ps. 8:3–4) What are we, fickle, feeble, frail mankind, that God himself would think of us? More than that, that he’d love us? And more than that, that he’d love us so much that he’d send his Son to die for us so that we could spend eternity with him?
All throughout the Bible, one of the common, recurring threads is God delighting in the small, the fragile, and the weak. These are whom Christ seeks (Luke 4:18–19) and these are whom he gets the most glory from. This is why we can glory, regardless of what’s happening around, because God favors us, God thinks on us, God is for us! (Rom. 8:31) You can live confidently and faithfully, even in the midst of the torrent of life, in the midst of suffering and pain and anguish, because the God is for you! You, personally! He delights in you, he loves you, so much so that his Son went to the cross and suffered the cruelest form of death ever known to man. The love of God knows no bounds, has no measures, and surpasses all knowledge. That God would take delight in and impart everlasting grace to filthy, messed up sinners like you and me is all the proof we need of his eternal and inseparable love. (Rom. 8:35–39; Eph. 3:18) Yes, this God is for you and, right now, favors you.
And yet, you think he isn’t in control of your turmoil? Do you really think your situation is out of his hands? That it’s too big for him? Certainly, there’s nothing too big for my God. “It certainly is not possible for us to be in a position where Omnipotence cannot assist us,” writes Charles Spurgeon. (354) So, fret not, Christian, for even now, you are under the protection of the gospel. “In Christ Jesus, holiness, justice, and truth, unite with mercy, grace, and love, in weaving an invincible shield around each believer.” (Winslow, 350–51) The God in whom all things originate and in whom all things consist is on your side, he’s in your corner! God’s favor alone, writes John Calvin, “is a sufficient solace in every sorrow, a protection sufficiently strong against all the storms of adversities.”
Take heart, for God the Creator is for you — to infinity and beyond!
Charles Spurgeon, The Saint and his Saviour: The Progress of the Soul in the Knowledge of Jesus (Houston: Christian Focus, 1989).
Octavius Winslow, No Condemnation in Christ Jesus: As Unfolded in the Eighth Chapter of the Epistle to the Romans (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1991).