Our Tuesday Together reflections this fall will focus on thanking and praising God. “Adoration is the spontaneous yearning of the heart to worship, honor, magnify, and bless God.”(PRAYER:Finding the Heart’s True Home by Richard J. Foster)
“O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.” (Psalm 34:3)
I remember our hot summer days as a child when my cousins and I would spend endless hours using the bottom of an old glass to study the flies, the worms or any other creatures found in my grandparents’ house or garden. We did not have a magnifying glass, but we had those old jars and bottles that our grandma allowed us to use and we’d turn them in all directions to make the bugs look bigger or smaller.
I was intrigued by David’s choice of words in this verse. What does it mean to magnify God? Does this verse mean that we have to make God look bigger than he actually is? I found part of the answer by studying the antonym of the word ‘magnify’. A few of those, as suggested by Thesaurus are ‘compress, contract, decrease, lessen, reduce, shrink, diminish’. So, if I am not magnifying God, is it possible that I am doing the opposite: I am reducing him to my limited understanding or I am expecting him to be and function as my limited mind expects him to?
On the other hand, this exploration of what it means to magnify God led me to the other question – why do we have to magnify Him? I remember my grandparents with fondness as they were trying to respond with enthusiasm to our endeavors. But my grandma always had to put on her glasses in order to see well. When we magnify the Lord we help others see who God is, too. It is like giving someone a pair of glasses so they can see clearer. When we magnify the Lord we help others put on “glasses” so they can see God clearer with the eyes of their soul. We do not make God bigger, we simply help them see how amazing He actually is. And how do we “put on these glasses”? By praising God, by naming his wondrous works, by celebrating what he has done. And our togetherness in this makes a giant “magnifying glass” for more and more people to see how amazing and true our God is! And, somehow, in the process, our hearts get enlarged and our vision of him becomes clearer too! He is bigger than we can comprehend or imagine!
Questions to Ponder:
- What are some areas where you tend to reduce God, rather than magnify him? Are you able to identify what potential things are at the root of this?
- Who around you needs a clear and fresh ‘lens’ to see God’s love and pursuit of them? How can you magnify God to them?
- What is one of God’s attributes that has been evident to you during Breather Month that you want to stop and celebrate?
Prayer of Response:
Lord, at the start of this ministry year, I want to commit to magnifying you. My soul needs it and our community, both local and international, needs it. I confess that I can easily go into the shrinking mode, but my desire is to have a radically faith-filled and gratitude-filled heart, that magnifies you – for you are bigger, stronger, wiser, kinder than my mind could ever comprehend. O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together! Amen.
—Submitted by Diana Anton
Diana serves as the Executive Director of Lifesprings International and her passion is to see women worldwide connected, encouraged and prepared to impact their communities with the love of God. During Breather Month she spent a whole week restoring old wood and she enjoyed the process so much, reflecting on the parallel to the soul restoration that God does. She and Bogdan also got to explore a fun little island in the middle of the Mediterranean called Malta where they ate rabbit, one of the specific local dishes.
Ruth Wood says
I like this idea of magnifying. We could never speak too highly of God or make God so big that we go beyond the realm of who he is. The bigger we make him the more we discover about him. And wow, that’s amazing! Thanks for the great illustration.