Thursday, September 27, 2007

the scent of our King

This bloom of Rose of Sharon in my backyard is concealing her beauty - only a hint, a glimpse of what is contained within the petals can be seen. That reminds me of the view the Old Testament saints had of Jesus, veiled shadows pointing to a future glory and a majesty so great that when He walked in their midst, many failed to recognize Him. They were looking for what would fit within their paradigm of majestic glory. This morning my heart, much like the writer of the Psalm below, is overflowing with a yearning - but mine is to know Him so well, that I will not miss Him... a need to know Him so intimately that I can recognize His scent. This post is the first in what, Lord willing, will be a series of studies to know my Lord more intimately.

Psalm 45:8

All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad.

I spent a few months sniffing essential oils, incense sticks and the like in the search for this scent. I learned that a comparable fragrance that I could relate to would be something of a combination of sandalwood, and cinnamon, but I had no current reference for the aloes. I discovered that these combinations would fragrance anointing oils - as for anointing the High Priest, as well as for embalming the dead. Hmmmmm. This oil is also referred to as the oil of gladness, or the oil of joy. The Holy Spirit is frequently referred to as this oil. My search for the scent was pointing so clearly to Christ Himself, that my search transferred back to Him alone. Joel 2:13 comes to mind, in that outward expressions are not what God is looking for, and therefore are probably not the way in which He is revealed either. What I really seek is to fellowship so closely with Him that I begin to bear His scent, from the inside out. I can only know Him this well when I abide deeply in the Word and prayer, because through the Word I come to know the truth of Christ and God's purposes, and through prayer, the knowledge in my head deepens the relationship with my heart. I'll be exploring the glimpses of my beloved Savior throughout the Word as I seek to become more like Him in the process.

My first glimpse of Christ is in creation:

Genesis 1:26:

Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the sky, over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth."

Colossians 1:15-17

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities - all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.

Hebrews 1:2 these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world.

I am struck by the example of unity that this reveals... Our triune Godhead planning the world that would later be our temporal home. Jesus enacted the desires of His Father's heart...the Holy Spirit quietly hovered, how beautiful. Consider how closely Christ was aligned with the purposes of God the Father. No personal agenda, no disagreements in project management. Just pure unity. Unity in purpose, execution, design.
However - - there are some features of creation that keep me guessing... when I consider some marine animals, their amazing design gets me to think there might have been some compromise involved in this whole unity thing....

Bicolor Angelfish bottom photo

Mandarin Goby top photo

Ok, I'm kidding... The marine examples reflect, to me, the utter joy and expressive abandon that accompanied the act of creation. There is a joyful, exhuberant side to the Lord. To contrast my image of my King suffering for my wretched sin, I can contemplate my preincarnate Lord, spirit in form and omnipresent in nature, celebrating the expression of perfection, joyfully splashing color, sound and smell across the vast beauty of His creation. The realities of life in today's world frequently expose me to news reports so hideous that I cannot bear the details, and must rush turn the radio off so I can to turn my heart to prayer. Especially in these moments, I must remember that this same God is Lord and King over all. As our world continues on its course toward our appointment with eternity, I must never loose perspective. He reigns. His purposes are unfolding before our eyes, even when we cannot see. This all began for the purpose revealing and celebrating His glory, and that is where it will all end. The hand that created the universe is the same Hand that was pierced for our sin, and it is the same Hand that will return to take us home.

Enjoy Nicole Mullen celebrate the hope of our Redeemer!


Jen said...

Dinah, you have some beautiful pictures on your blog!

I hope you get to realize your dream of sailing again soon. I'm hopeful that I will, as well!

Dinah said...

Hey Jen - good to hear from you! I'm glad you enjoyed some of the pictures. I've found a lot of amazing beauty on this continent, and I've not travelled that much. We can hope for sailing in eachother's futures then!
Best to you and your lovely children,