Make Room for a Bigger God
Psalm 24:7 “Lift up your heads, you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in.”
As I watched the heavens move this morning I was in awe of God and His creation. I was acutely aware of my smallness and in the midst of the largeness of God’s spinning universe, and yet overwhelmed that the same God who spoke the stars in existence knows how many tears I have cried and how many hairs are on my red head.
As I opened up my Bible for a time of worship and reflection of God this morning, I came upon Psalm 24. I read, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it…” Not only do the heavens declare God’s vastness, but the earth does too. Recently, I traveled by car from Missouri to Washington. We moved from wide, open skies, prairies as far as the eye could see, and rain storms that could be identified from a far distance to the huge buttes and mesas of Wyoming. Our small car rolled through mountainous terrain with enormous hills for hours and I marveled at how pioneers ever navigated such a massive amount of land. As I traveled, I took in the vastness and enormousness of God’s creativity and I welcomed the feeling of being overshadowed and engulfed in something larger than myself. Sometimes, I don’t like feeling small, because it makes me feel insignificant, but this was different because of my awareness that the same God who created the earth and everything in it, is the same one who knit me together in my mother’s womb and knows my thoughts before I think them. For me, it’s a very comforting thing to know there’s a God bigger than my whole world.
Later on in Psalm 24 I came upon verse 7 ““Lift up your heads, you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in.” In Biblical times, cities were often entered through gates. Something like two poles with a beam laid across the top. The beam on the top was referred to as the head of the gate. Sometimes in order to prepare for and welcome immense items coming into the city, the head of the gate was lifted up so that larger things could pass through.
Now consider for a moment that as Christ followers we too are gates. We are vessels through which God desires to reveal His infinite, glory to a waiting world. When we pray to God as Jesus modeled, “Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” we invite the largeness of the kingdom of heaven into the earthly realms. Our prayers combined with acts of faith become the portals through which God releases His glory in this sin soaked and searching world. God may make known very specific steps of faith He wishes us to take as we follow Him, but here in verse 7 we see that the gates are instructed to “lift up their heads” so the King of glory may come in.
Throughout the Psalms, David speaks of lifting his head and in the same breath refers to victory over enemies or finding refreshment in the heat of battle while lifting his head high. Lifting up the head also embodied the idea of God rightfully and victoriously returning to His tabernacle where His glory could rest. Gates were lifted to welcome and receive the King of glory. What can you and I do to welcome the King of glory to reveal Himself in and through us?
We too can lift our heads (gates) by keeping a faithful and consistent gaze upon God while we are on this earth. In the midst of the daily and the difficult and the discouraging, we can hold our heads up victoriously believing in and declaring His promises and we can look UP. We can be lifted up in consistent prayer that truly and honestly seeks His will before or at the cost of our own.
Recently, my brother shared an encouraging word with me reminding me that I am a gate and that God’s glory and goodness were waiting to come into my life. He encouraged me that it’s just a matter of timing and alignment and that word leads me back to the eclipse I saw today. If we want to see God move heaven and earth, if we want to see His power and might, then we’ve got to consistently pray like it’s possible and be yielded vessels. In the midst of so many ordinary days those who were looking up and watching were able to behold the planets literally lining up. God gave us a glimpse of something bigger and it was awe-inspiring. The heavens truly do declare His glory. Who can fathom what greater things God may wish to usher into this world, through those whose gates are lifted up and whose hearts are aligned with Him?