“Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening “Do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.”
A friend of mine recently shared this quote with me and I found it very moving and encouraging. Upon writing this article I thought, “Why does it resonate with me”? After all one could dismiss Chesterton as being too simplistic and perhaps speaking of God on too elementary of terms. Yet, I think not. In fact, I think perhaps we (me) are too full of ourselves and that perhaps his quote is not simple enough. The problem, I think, is our lack of amazement at the God who created all that we know.
This quote creates an image in my mind of a very endearing God. Not that we should try to sanitize or contain God, for that would be useless and futile. Young Lucy asked of Mrs. Beaver in “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe,” if Aslan was safe, and the rebuke came back,
“Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
No, that’s not what I am speaking of and I’m not talking about an old and gentle grandfather character. I carry great and profound respect for our marvelous God. This is the God who spoke 400 billion stars into existence, just in the Milky Way! But I also note that He calls me friend and it’s that portion of His character that makes Him so endearing. Paul Tripp made a good point when he wrote, “Awe of God will produce willing submission to his will, and a lack of awe of God will lead me to step over his boundaries.” I found it settling to know that because of His grandness I am drawn into His loving arms. I want to move toward Him, to trust Him, and to love Him….regardless of my life’s circumstances.
Indeed, the marvelous God, the only living God, is not some despotic and deistic entity who is fragile and temperamental. He is certainly just and can be angered, but He is safe for His children. He can be trusted by those who believe Him and have surrendered themselves to Him. He is merciful and has done what no other god has done. You see, in all of religion, including, atheism, it becomes all about hoping one has done enough to reach whatever goal that life may promise the individual. With this true and living God, however, He has chosen to reach down to us. He has condescended and made Himself approachable through Jesus. Yes, I am endeared to Him on a grand scale, but I am also endeared to Him by His tenderness, His complexity, and His eternal appetite of infancy.
Today, I will choose to believe like a child and stand in awe as I watch this God say to the sun, the moon, and the daisy, “Do it again!”