October 26, 2012 by JesstheMess
Have you ever taken time to observe the artwork in the sky?
As I pick up my camera, seeking to take note of some of the ways God has revealed himself in creation, I don’t often turn to the sky. And yet, when I get home, the photos I love are those that have captured what I could not see.
The sky above might be noticed when there is a rainbow or a brilliant sunset, yet it has many other moods. It can be dull, dark and ominous, bright with the glare of the sun, clear blue or full of fluffy clouds whipping by… If you live near the coast as I do, this can be an ever-changing canvas throughout the day.
Have you ever stopped to consider what these magnificent artworks are saying?
In the Bible amongst the songs of King David we find a song that celebrates the way God speaks to us, or reveals himself to us. It starts of recounting how the creation speaks of its Maker.
The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours out speech,
and night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words,
whose voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out through all the earth,
and their words to the end of the world.
(Psalm 19:1-4 ESV)
The creation is said to ‘declare’ and ‘proclaim’, to ‘pour out speech’. When it comes to ‘art’ we are familiar with the concept that the artist is communicating something, or making comment on something through their artistic expression. Inspired by God’s Holy Spirit, David testifies that the artwork of the sky is in fact God proclaiming His handiwork, declaring His glory. This Psalm goes on to testify to how God’s law addresses the soul. The picture is of God the Maker and God the law-giver being one. God reveals himself primarily through His Word (the Bible), but we should not ignore His declared glory through His creation. Seeing the sky in its various moods should spur us to consider its Maker. Later in the Bible the Apostle Paul goes as far as to say
For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
(Romans 1:19-20 ESV)
No person has a plausible excuse for we live each day amongst God’s proclamation of his glory. Take time and consider what God is communicating through his artwork in the sky. Read His written Word, study the skies and praise Him for his proclaimed glory.
Seeing the sky in all its moods reminds me of our Great and Mighty God (Psalm 47:2, Psalm 89:8) and of His Majesty and Power (Psalm 68:34). When it is ominous It reminds me of His warnings of the judgement to come (Acts 17:30-31). When there are vast layers of cloud it reminds me of how BIG our God is and how vast are his thoughts (Psalm 139:17). It reminds me that though the sky changes often God does not change, what He has said He will do (Numbers 23:19).
These skies that seem so amazing, so beautiful, stunning and majestic are but the artwork. We could praise the photographer, we could praise the artwork but much better to praise the one who set it in place, who sustains it day by day and who is declaring His glory on an ever-changing canvas.
Let them praise the name of the LORD,
for his name alone is exalted;
his majesty is above earth and heaven.
(Psalm 148:13 ESV)
© J.Smith Photography and ‘illuminating the invisible’ (2012)