The Size of God

April 27, 2010 by  
Filed under Perspectives

By Brian Petak

I once heard someone say that “the size of your worship is determined by the size of your God.” In other words, if my view of God is teeny-tiny, my response in worship to Him will correspondingly be teeny-tiny. On the other hand, if my view of God is HUGE–as it should be–then my worship experience will naturally be huge as well! I’ve thought about this concept a lot, and have determined that I far too often live as if I have a very small God–my life-response, not just what I sing, but how I live, often reflects that I don’t have an accurate picture of the BIGness–the absolute greatness of God.

There are many scriptural passages that talk about the greatness of God, but I think our psalmist worship leader, David, was onto something when he wrote Psalm 8. In verses 3-4, he says, “When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained; What is man that You take thought of him, the son of man that You care for him?” David had a lot of time to consider the “bigness” of God. Think about it–he was a shepherd. What do shepherds do? Well….they feed sheep, lead sheep, protect sheep, move sheep, carry sheep, shear sheep….Twenty-four/seven, David is catering to all things sheep. But in his off time when the sheep are either out of trouble or sleeping, what is David doing? I picture him kicking back on a hillside outside Jersualem at night (keep in mind, there are no big city lights to distract) and looking up into the dark midnight sky “considering” the stars and the moon–but more importantly, considering the God who hung them in the sky!

I’ve found a place in the middle of nowhere–away from the lights of the city and the noise of cars–where I can look up into the sky and consider God. And honestly, as I look up into the sky and think about what is out there beyond the stars that my little eyes can see, it hurts my brain to think about how big God is. I thought the earth was big, but did you know that you could fit over a million earths in our sun? And I thought the sun was big, but did you know that the sun is just an average-sized star in the Milky Way galaxy which holds over a BILLION stars?

I recently did a little reading and found out that the galaxy nearest to ours (the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy for you astronomy buffs out there) is about 80,000 light years away. Can you imagine how far even the nearest galaxy is? It’s even harder to fathom when you realize a single lightyear equals about 6 TRILLION miles. That means the nearest galaxy to the Milky Way is about 480,000,000,000,000,000 miles from earth! Now….think about how big the universe is when scientists have estimated there may be over 100 BILLION galaxies in the universe. Is your brain experiencing that sensation that occurs when you drink a Slurpie too fast?

Well, all of this astronomy trivia is great, but the point is we’re trying to fathom the size of God, which will in turn enlarge our response to Him, which will in turn completely transform our lives. Isaiah helps us put everything into perspective with what he writes about God in chapter 40. In verse 12 he asks, “Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, or with the breadth of His hand marked off the heavens?” Do you remember how big the universe is? (We were just trying to comprehend that, remember?) Well, this is how big God is–He is able to hold out His hand, spread His fingers, and mark off the distance from one side of the universe to the other from the tip of His pinky finger to the tip of His thumb. Of course Isaiah writes in poetic language and certainly God is much bigger than this, but do you see what I’m getting at? God is HUGE! And far more often than I’d like to admit, I act as if this incredible universe revolves around ME!

Obviously, it’s impossible to quantify “the size of God”–God is limitless and infinite. But if our response to God should correspond with how big and mighty and transcendent and awesome and loving and merciful and powerful He truly is, shouldn’t our worship be MUCH bigger than it is? My prayer is that as we open our eyes and our hearts to see more of who God is, our lives will be radically transformed to express a life-response that matches his size.