Thank goodness for 2015! While I am always grateful to have the privilege of seeing the dawning of another new year, I am also glad the old year has been packed away with the Christmas decorations. I’m all for new beginnings, do-overs, and more opportunities to try and get it right more often than I get it wrong.
With new beginnings fresh on my mind, I’m drawn back to the very first new year ever which is recorded in Chapter One of Genesis. Everything else in the Bible is grounded in that creation story. It all starts there, in the beginning.
Verse 3 describes the very first day: God said “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good.
The second day, verses 9-10: God made and separated land and sea. And God saw that it was good.
Day three, verses 11-12: God made plants, trees, and vegetation. And God saw that it was good.
Day four, verses 14-19: God made the sun, moon, and stars. And God saw that it was good.
Day five, verses 20-23: God filled the waters with fish and the sky with birds. And God saw that it was good.
Day six, verses 24-27: God made livestock and all the other animals. And God saw that the animals were good, but He wasn’t finished yet. Still on day six, God created man in his own image. He created male and female humans.
And God saw that it…oh, wait. It doesn’t say that there.
Further down in verse 31 God looked over the whole lot of His creation and saw that it all was very good, but there is no record that God looked specifically at the man and woman and declared them good as He did all the other things He created earlier in the week.
It makes me wonder, why was the light good? What was it about the land, sea, sun, and moon that made God see them as good? I don’t think God needed the vegetation for food or the livestock to pull a wagon. God must have been doing just fine without any of those things before their creation, so what were those things actually good for?
I’ll tell you what I can’t live without in this new year: days, nights, land, water, plants, and animals. I like to sleep when it’s dark outside, shower with warm water in the morning, and then eat eggs for breakfast. I think God saw all those things He created as good for humans, not for Himself. All of it was for us.
Why would God do such a thing? You’ve probably heard someone declare their love to another by saying they would give them the world if they could. Maybe it was just the moon they wanted to gift to their beloved. Those words and ideas make good song lyrics, but even if we love another human that much none of us can actually lasso the moon for them. That, however, is exactly what God did because He loved us that much.
The sun shining through my window glorifies God with every beam because that is what it was created to do. Rising in the east every morning is its response to the Creator. It has no other choice. It’s a reminder that God loves me. The human sitting here in my desk chair typing this was also created to glorify God, but I’m afraid I don’t always do that. I do have choice and sometimes, well, I’m in need of a do-over.
The good in humans is up to us. He loved us so much that even before we were born He created the world just for us. We get to decide what our response will be and whether we will use our lives to glorify Him or not. Will we ever hear God say that He sees humans as good? I think it will come when it isn’t time that’s measured, but rather the volume of the praises sung to God Almighty. It is in the eternity of heaven that those who made the choice to spend their earthly lives glorifying God will get to hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
This was originally posted January 25, 2015 on The Press and Standard's website: