Heaven is weird.

"Heaven is weird." Willimon and Hauerwas

This is the strangest church steeple I've ever seen. It's at a Presbyterian church in Port Gibson, Mississippi. Look closely and you will see a gilded finger pointing into the sky. The point - God is different.  I will talk about the phrases, "In heaven" and "Hallowed be your name" tonight during our midweek prayer gathering. Here's a little preview.

"In heaven" is more spiritual than spatial. "Heavenly Father" speaks of God's personal relationship with us and his "otherness." When we approach God we must remember that he is, well, different. God is independent of us and far greater. God has desires. God acts. God is patient but he's not obligated to wait. God is merciful.  Here is some wise guidance for relating to our heavenly Father - "Guard your steps when you go to the house of God; to draw near to listen is better than the sacrifice offered by fools; for they do not know how to keep from doing evil.  Never be rash with your mouth, not let your heart be quick to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven, and you upon earth; therefore let your words be few" Ecclesiastes 5:1-2 (NRSV).

"All creation is meant to hallow the name of God. We must learn the melody of adoration." Willimon and Hauerwas

When we hallow the name of God we slow down to worship. We put God in his place and find our true location as well. We worship because God likes it. He takes pleasure in us. Worship glorifies God and is a means of our sanctification. In hallowing the name of God we also appeal to his reputation. Moses did this. Joshua did it. We also affirm our commitment to observing the command not to take the name of Lord in vain.

Jesus' model prayer should impact our prayers in the deepest way. These two little phrases say so much. May we have the grace to apply them in our days.

1 comment:

David Bolin said...

Remember seeing this steeple as a child. It was one of the first pictures I made as a photographer. Years later the finger pointed upward was known as the "One Way" sign to the those of us in the Jesus movement. And if you walk through the old cemetery off the Baylor campus, you'll come upon a tombstone or two with the same. Always looks like hope.

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