When we look into the vastness of space, gaze at the billions of stars, and reflect on just how big the universe really is, we tend to feel very small…insignificant almost. This feeling can be quite overwhelming to some as we wonder how we can measure up when compared to the complexities of the grand universe. Because most of us will never achieve even world fame and fortune, we might think that we don’t matter…that we are just a cosmic speck in the grand scheme of things.
And then to look at our planet and all of creation around us, I think “how it is that God can see little me in all this?” He’s the God of the universe! He created all things! So how do I fit within the expanse of time and space in God’s creation? Does God even see me? You may not feel like you are special, but I have some news for you!
Let’s think about Zacchaeus from the Bible story in the Gospel of Luke. He was a Jewish man, very short in stature (Bible’s words, not mine), who worked for the Roman government collecting taxes from his fellow Jews. Not only was he good at his job, he was the chief collector in the city of Jericho. This is not a very popular man! Most of the collectors back then were cheats and often collected more than they should to pocket the overage for themselves. By society standards, they were frowned upon and even shunned.
And though Zacchaeus was a wealthy man, he was also reported to be a very honest and Godly man. (Yes, there can be honest, Godly people that do unfavorable jobs!) I imagine that outside of family though, he was a lonely individual. We know that he followed God’s rules, lead an honest life, and that God knew him, but he wasn’t looked up to or admired.
But God knew him so well, that long before Zacchaeus was even born, a sycamore-fig tree seed was planted in a particular spot. Then, God watered and took care of that seed until it grew to be a full-size tree. All because one day, in the future of that planting, that man named Zacchaeus would have an encounter with Jesus, the Son of God! God knew that Zacchaeus would be so eager to see Jesus coming that he would climb the tree God placed years ago to get a glimpse of the Messiah. That event lead to Jesus calling to Zacchaeus and having a blessed dinner with him and his family!
The same thing applies to us, individually! God knows us personally and intimately. Luke 12 states that God knows us so well that even our hairs are numbered. He knows even the smallest of creatures like sparrows.
One of my favorite songs is from singer Betty McDaniel, a treasured Gospel singer out of Canada. It is titled “He looked across the years”. The song reflects what I am trying to convey here: that God looked across the vastness of time and space in His creation and saw you! He not only knows us, but also made a way to remedy the sin in our lives that separates us from Him. Jesus looked across the years from the cross so that we can be restored to a right relationship with God through Jesus!
God is so big!
The question I have is this: if God is so awesome and powerful to create everything into existence, and yet personal enough to know each of us individually…then why are we so complacent in our relationship with Him? Why do we ignore His sovereignty? Why do we treat Him like a cosmic vending machine wanting only blessings and fortunes and such, yet don’t submit to His will and ways?
This is truly a much deeper topic than what can be covered here now, but as I explore this in my life, I look back at all the little things God has, in His infinite wisdom, done for me. He has directed my paths much differently than I would have walked on my own. God’s ways are not our ways. But I’m pretty sure that He knows what’s best for me better than I know myself!
As He looked across the years at Zacchaeus, as He looked across the years at me, as He looked across the years at you…He set up everything in advance because He loves us and knows us and wants us to acknowledge Him with fellowship and love! The old Puritan catechism question is this: What is the chief end of man? Man’s chief end is to glorify God (1 Corinthians 10:31), and to enjoy Him forever (Psalm 73:25-26).
May we acknowledge the sovereignty of God in our daily lives. Amen