There is a moment during a wedding in which all time seems to stand still. It is the moment when the doors to the sanctuary are opened, revealing the bride arrayed in white. She has never looked so radiant, her face alight with joy as her smiling eyes seek out her groom. The groom, standing at the altar, gasps the second his eyes fall upon the bride walking towards him. The bride and groom’s eyes meet. Time slows. For this is a moment not to be rushed, but enjoyed. As the bride places one foot in front of the other, the couple cannot seem to take their eyes off of each other as smiles grace their faces, tears glisten in their eyes, and they lovingly gaze at the other. In this still moment, with a gentle song playing in the background, all others disappear until it is just the bride and the groom beholding the other in pure adoration.
A few weeks ago, I was at a MercyMe concert. The night was cool, the crowd was excited, and the band was energetic as one song after another rang through the Milwaukee ballpark. And then they played my song. The same song that has gotten me through many-a tough day and sleepless night. As the music slowed and the group’s voices drifted on the breeze, my ears became attuned to the words.
I know You’re able
And I know You can
Save through the fire with Your mighty hand.
But even if You don’t,
My hope is You alone.
I know the sorrow
And I know the hurt
Would all go away if You’d just say the word.
But even if You don’t,
My hope is You alone.
You’ve been faithful.
You’ve been good
All my days.
Jesus, I will cling to You
Come what may.
‘Cause I know You’re able.
Yes, I know You can.
As the words flowed out, they resonated in my heart. I could feel the Lord’s love for me, like a gentle caress to my soul. And as the group continued to sing, tears began to flow down my cheeks as I sat in awe of my God. As I sat and simply adored my Savior. I didn’t want anything from Him. I didn’t ask anything of Him. My only desire in that moment was to hear Him, to see Him, and to utterly adore Him. Like a bride gazing at her betrothed as she takes one step closer to the altar, I sat gazing at the beauty of the Lover of my soul.
Isn’t this what Christianity is all about? Isn’t this the point of creation? Is this not our ultimate purpose in life?
Friend, we were made to adore Christ. “Oh, worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness!” (Psalm 96:9). This is more than a call to observe the holiness of God. To worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness is an invitation to gaze upon His loveliness, His beauty, for our pleasure. Like one standing in the midst of a garden in full bloom, we are invited to stand in the midst of Christ’s holiness and simply gaze upon the beauty surrounding us.
In the Westminster Catechism, the first question posed is profound, “What is the chief end of man?” The answer, “To glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” To gaze upon His glory. To admire His loveliness. To worship Him in the beauty of holiness.
As the bride in white stands at the sanctuary doors, gazing upon her groom, her heart fills to overflowing with love and adoration. In the same way, as we learn to worship God in the beauty of His holiness, doing nothing but gazing upon our Betrothed, our hearts will be filled as we fall in-love with our Creator.
Don’t miss this! To worship our God is to adore Him. That is all He wants. That is all He asks. He wants nothing more but the adoration – the pure, undefiled love – of our hearts. God is our Groom, standing at the altar, waiting until our eyes meet His. His heart has never been so full of love, and He longs for nothing more than for our eyes to meet His, allowing us to gaze upon His beauty and be filled with adoration for our Groom.
In an evening sunset which paints the sky in glorious hues of blues, pinks, and yellows. In the ocean waves as they kiss the sand, smoothing its rough layers. In the laugh of a child as he sings a silly song and prances around the living room. In the colors of fall, adorning the mountains in breathtaking splendor. In a gentle smile through tears as the broken-hearted find joy in spite of pain. In the blood that flowed down Calvary’s hill as an innocent Man gave His life for the guilty so that they could rest in His victory. This is the beauty of Christ, my friend. It can be found in the most joyful occasion or the most painful of seasons. It is all around us – in every new dawn and ending dusk. But oh, how easy it is to miss when the garden is surrounded by threatening weeds. How easy it is to become so overcome by the task of pulling the weeds that we miss the splendor of the colorful blooms.
The loveliness of our God is all around us. He is standing at the altar at the front of the church, waiting for your eyes to meet His. He is ready to reveal to you His beauty. But first, you must look. Look into His eyes. See the love glistening there. Allow yourself to simply gaze upon the beauty of His holiness, and watch as the mountains of weeds crumble among the weight of your adoration.
Choose today to worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness. After all, you were made to adore Him.