For since the world began,
no ear has heard,
and no eye has seen a God like you,
who works for those who wait for him!
A different world. A different perspective. What if you could enter the opening in the tree. What would you see? How would it differ from the passing traffic – vehicle or pedestrian – that exists in the world as we see and know it?
Surely there already is a world within the world that exists inside that tree, but what if we could enter in? Imagination allows for wonder and awe and often for brand new perspectives. Perspectives that allow us to enter into the realm of God’s reality. He expresses Himself in every part of His creation, and yet how often do we minimize His mark in the everydayness of life around us.
What could we learn about life through the microscopic cells that brim with energy and vitality inside that tree? What could we learn about the life of the insect world within? What could we learn about the God who created all these diverse forms of life if we were just willing to slow down and ponder and wonder and listen for the voice of God in the seeming stillness? Could we even learn something new about our selves and our fellow human beings and what it means to live in community as we were created to live? Could we learn to see the greatness of God in the smallest of revelations?
Yet when I am among mature believers, I do speak with words of wisdom, but not the kind of wisdom that belongs to this world or to the rulers of this world, who are soon forgotten. No, the wisdom we speak of is the mystery of God—his plan that was previously hidden, even though he made it for our ultimate glory before the world began. But the rulers of this world have not understood it; if they had, they would not have crucified our glorious Lord. That is what the Scriptures mean when they say,
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard,
and no mind has imagined
what God has prepared
for those who love him.” (Isaiah 64:4)
But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets. No one can know a person’s thoughts except that person’s own spirit, and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit. And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us.
When we tell you these things, we do not use words that come from human wisdom. Instead, we speak words given to us by the Spirit, using the Spirit’s words to explain spiritual truths. But people who aren’t spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can’t understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means. Those who are spiritual can evaluate all things, but they themselves cannot be evaluated by others. For,
“Who can know the Lord’s thoughts?
Who knows enough to teach him?” (Isaiah 40:13)
But we understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ.
1 Corinthians 2:6-16 (NLT)
How often do we slow down enough to allow the Spirit to reveal to us the mind of Christ concerning our circumstances, our relationships, our loves, our desires, or our goals. Our understanding must be transformed by His wisdom for His life to be reflected through us to the world in need around us. God’s heart is to draw ALL men unto Himself, but are we lifting Jesus up so that He can do the drawing and the transforming or are we lifting ourselves up and reaping nothing more than human sympathy and support?
What great thoughts to ponder as we face a new year, perhaps a new beginning for many of us!
“Look! I am creating new heavens and a new earth,
and no one will even think about the old ones anymore.”