Bender Bylines:   By  Ron  Bender,  President /CEO.  Bender Consulting   "Does Size Really Matter?" July, 2011

 

Bender Bylines
Brought to you by:
Ron Bender President/CEO Bender Consulting
E-mail ronb.benderconsult@gmail.com

 

 

  "Does Size Really Matter?"

I figured that title would get your attention, so I hope I don't waste that great teaser with a lousy article. I have been focusing lately on something that I believe is very easy for us to overlook in the busyness (or pain) of our everyday lives: the infinite size of God and the limited size of us.

All to often I am contacted by people who are in the middle of excruciatingly difficult and painful circumstances. A few days ago I was talking with some one who was at the end of his rope, feeling he is unable to take another step because of the overwhelming weight of a secret sexual addiction. He is weary, afraid, feeling alone, angry and desperate. And his pain is real, it isn't some fabricated nonsense that only exists in his imagination. He is broken, his soul bent to the ground. How am I to respond to people with such daily brokenness and pain? It is a difficult question to answer, but we'll come back to this a little later.

I love the song called "How Great is Our God". It helps me remember just how great and how big my God is! I see the stars at night and know the heavens stretch beyond my imagination and  understand that billions of the stars have not yet been discovered. One star, VY Canis Majoris, is the largest star discovered to date. It is so massive that if the earth's size were represented by the size of a golf ball, Canis Majoris would be the height of Mount Everest in comparison! You could fit 5.44 quadrillion earths inside this star. Bottom line? It is a big, BIG star!

As I marveled at this fact, I was flabbergasted even more by a passage in Psalm 33 that declared where this star came from. "By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth." (v. 6; emphasis mine) Wow! Canis Majoris, this massive, intensely hot star that is beyond our ability to comprehend, was breathed out of the mouth of God. How many breaths have you taken up to this point in reading this article? Well, it only took one from God to create ALL the heavens. So, next time you look up into the night sky, reflect on the fact that it was by a simple sigh from Almighty God that the stars and galaxies exist as they do.

What does any of this have to do with human brokenness or marriage problems or financial stress or any of the daily junk that crops up in all our lives? It has everything to do with these things because until we get a proper view of God we will never be able to put our circumstances in their proper place. You see, this same God that breathed the heavens into existence is the same God who breathed life into us. Chew on that for a moment...Bend your mind around this. Can you see How Great is our God?

"The LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being." (Gen. 2:7)

The same breath that breathed out Canis Majoris breathed life into you and me. How might this reshape how you see the difficult circumstances in your life? Might you begin to realize that whatever you face in life is smaller than whatever God can breathe into you?

So, this fellow who called me, I knew he needed to be encouraged, to grasp a bigger view of God. I simply began to lead him to a perch where he might gain a new perspective, one that wasn't focused solely on the pain and all that might go wrong (that just becomes a never ending trail of "what if's"). He needed to see things from God's point of view, he needed to bend his mind around the wonderful knowledge of God. He needed to understand that the God of the heavens was right there with him, breathing life and hope into his seemingly impossible, hopeless situation.

This is the way God chooses to work in His children. He displays His glory throughout all of creation, inviting us to fall in humble awe before Him for the majesty of His handiwork. And yet, His greater glory seems to come through displaying the power of His grace and mercy in hopeless, painful, broken circumstances that we are incapable of controlling or changing. God whispers to us in our pain and brokenness, "I breathed the heavens into place. Do you think there is anything in your life too hard for me? Lean into me, the Star-Breather, and I will give you what you need in exactly the moment you need it."

"He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint." (Isa. 40:39-31)

I prayed with this hurting friend, asking God to give him strength to keep going. I encouraged him to wait on the Lord, knowing that His view of his situation was perfect, seeing it in its fullness, not just his current point of pain. As we prayed through some of his fears, God renewed his strength and he was able to take another step forward. His faith increased and he saw a glimpse of the bigger picture. We rejoiced in God's faithfulness and were reminded that there is nothing too big for our God.

Does size, then, really matter? Only if you keep the proportions in their appropriate places. Life's struggles, disappointments and pain may all be genuinely 'big' problems. But compared to the size of the God who breathes out stars they are quickly put into their place. We are able to keep going because we know that anything we face will always be smaller than the God who holds us securely in His hand. Let us become those who gaze intently on this big, mighty and gracious God whenever life threatens to overwhelm us. I believe if we do this in increasing measure, we will live the lives of faith God desires for us and see the impossible become possible.

"When they came to the crowd, a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. 'Lord, have mercy on my son,' he said. 'He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him.'

'O unbelieving and perverse generation,' Jesus replied, 'how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.' Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed from that moment.

Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, 'Why couldn't we drive it out?'

He replied, 'Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.'"

--  Matthew 17:14-21

 I will never know just how big my God really is. I do know that he is bigger than the biggest problem that I have. Even the ones that I have created myself. I know that this may not be a popular belief and it may not even be your belief. Today I am bending my mind around the understanding that I serve a great, almighty, HUGE God. That gives me peace. I can live with that!



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History Of Bylines

Beauty of Brokenness

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Blinded By Grace

Does size really matter

Don't be stupid

Is Grace enough

Why should I Obey

What's the big deal

Not broken just bent

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Revised: June 12, 2011