Recently I moved into a new house. I had the opportunity to pick the lot before my house was built and chose what I believed offered the perfect tranquil view from my back patio. Who could turn down the dark green velvet field of grass accompanied by rich desert flora with the majestic mountain peaks pointing upward into the sky as a backdrop setting? Soon I would also discover God’s majesty showing off in the distant skyline. As the sun sets nightly, God’s finger painting in the distant sky quietly speaks of his grandeur.
The beauty is breathtaking.
From the first time I beheld the artist’s work, I became captivated and quickly looked forward to my nightly routine of gazing into the distance yearning for God’s next portrait. My mind is fascinated with the bond between the Master artist and the artwork as twilight falls each night. Always on time, the blaze of yellow, orange, and red colors scattered amid the horizon signals the end of each day. As I am gripped by every day’s final curtain, I am reminded that…
the artistic display is free and constant.
Over the course of each night while I stood quietly fixated on God’s painting, I couldn’t help but see a connection between the constant, vibrant sunsets and my relationship with Him. I realized that no matter what the day had dished up for me the Son was always receiving me with open arms. The beauty He paints on the sky’s horizon is picturesque of the love He writes on my heart. Just like the sunset is the bridge to nightfall, the Lord is my bridge to eternity.
Among my busyness one evening I was surprised that I had missed my sunset. I tried to brush aside my frustration since it wasn’t a conscious effort on my part, but it bothered me just the same. The best part of my day was to observe the landscape that God served every evening.
My desire was to always be captivated by God’s splendor!
As I reflected on how easy it was to forget my evening viewing I noticed a correlation with mankind’s relationship with the Father. It is easy to let the things of this world creep in and before you know it you have been swept away without really noticing. After all, who would purposefully forfeit communion with Him? Our hearts should be captivated by His unfailing
love…and a sunset that He offers to us daily!
In Revelation 2:4 we read about Jesus’ words to the Church of Ephesus as He told them, “But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” The word “left” in the Greek is aphēkes which means “to send away” or “to bid going away or depart”. Note that there is a difference between lost versus left. Lost implies accidental, but left denotes a deliberate act or power of a person’s will. In most instances we find ourselves excusing our inattentive behavior toward the Lord by allowing our attention to be steered by our cares of this world. As innocent as it may be, we can be drawn by little things…
that take our focus off of the picturesque sunset God has planned.
Albeit not all inclusive, take a moment to consider your adoration for Him by assessing the time you spend in the following:
· Church attendance
· Devotion and Journaling
Is something or someone occupying your time while the Lord is pushed aside? Are you discovering your benchmark for holiness becoming lower? When love in your heart for Jesus diminishes all is futile. Our love for Him should grow deeper and stronger and nothing should interfere with that relationship. I can’t help but picture Jesus in the beginning and end of each day as portrayed in Ephesians where God, “…raised him (son-rise) from the dead and seated him (son-set) at his right hand in the heavenly places” (1:20).
. G863 - aphiēmi - Strong's Greek Lexicon (NASB). Retrieved from https://www.blueletterbible.org//lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G863&t=NASB
. All quotations from scripture are taken from the English Standard Version of the Bible unless otherwise noted.