Prayer & Fasting, Day 5: God is Powerful.

And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. (Genesis 1:16) Awesome is God from his sanctuary; the God of Israel—he is the one who gives power and strength to his people. Blessed be God! (Psalm 68:35)

He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. (Hebrews 1:3)

Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen. (Revelation 7:12)

Genesis 1:16 is one of my favorite verses in the entire Bible. It’s the last three words that really get me, “...and the stars.” The power of God is so great that the entire universe of stars gets barely a mention, as though speaking the cosmos into creation were nothing for God. What breathtaking power God must have.

Often, however, the power of God isn't the subject of praise, but worry. Many people are uncomfortable with the sheer power of God. In our world, we’re used to seeing our leaders abuse power. “Power corrupts,” they say, “and absolute power corrupts absolutely!” Why, then, is it good news for us that God is unimaginably powerful?

First, God’s power fuels our worship. I remember watching the olympics as a boy. The event was weightlifting. Watching the power of the athletes on the screen, I was dumbfounded. I simply didn’t know how to process, as a little boy, the power that it must take to move such heavy, seemingly immovable objects. I admired these men for their strength. You and I are wired to be impressed by rare power like this. How much more, then, should we take a moment to consider the power of God and let our hearts loose to wonder at it.

But God’s power isn’t just for God’s sake. He uses his immense power for our behalf. In Psalm 68, David is praising God no only for having all the power, but for empowering his people with it. Are you facing a tough spot? Isn’t it great news to think that God is powerful enough to overcome whatever you are facing? When all we have is the impossible task in our view, we can become discouraged. But step back, and take a look at God’s power. Now we have reason to praise, even though what is ahead looks impossible.

We can also consider the immense humility of God in light of his power. In Jesus, we see the all-powerful God pulling back his might, putting on flesh, and walking among us. Hebrews tells  us that even in this state, the universe was being upheld by God’s power, and yet he was approachable to us. He didn’t explode onto the seen Hollywood-style, making demands for repentance. He withheld his power to become like us, even unto death for us.

It is for this reason that we will praise God’s power for all eternity. In Revelation, we get a preview of the power of God as fuel for praise. We will stand and sing with all the saints of God, “Amen, Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever!” This is our heart’s cry, because our powerful creator empowers us, saves us, and rescues us. That’s like gasoline on the fire of our worship.

Today, pause to reflect on God’s power, and ask him to bring that power to bear in your life, your church, and your city. He is well able to accomplish all his gracious will if we ask.

 God you are mighty and powerful. You created the universe, spoke the stars into existence, and keep them all burning for your praise. You are mighty, God.

Thank you for being mindful of me. It's amazing to consider that you made all this, and yet you care about me. Thank you for letting me share in your power to overcome sin, brokenness, and all that stands between me and you. You are strong, God, and able to overcome all obstacles in my life today.

Jesus, I cannot wait to join with the billions of voices from every tribe and nation to praise you for your power. Even though you are limitless in strength, you became nothing so that I could know you, praise you, and be satisfied in you. You are unspeakably wonderful, and I love you.