Lord our Lord, Your name is the most wonderful name in all the earth! Psalm 8:9 (NCV)
When I was in graduate school, one of the undergrad students asked me to write a letter of recommendation for her. She was applying for a summer research project. She was a terrible student. She was able to memorize all the facts but was unable to apply them in the simplest of scenarios. She routinely missed class and lab.
I tried to explain to her that she should get a letter of recommendation from a tenured professor not a teaching assistant. She persisted. Trying to soften the blow, I explained to her how the system worked and that a letter from a teaching assistant wouldn’t be worth anything. She persisted. Hoping she would take the hint, I told her she didn’t want me to write a letter for her. She persisted.
Finally, I wrote a letter for her detailing her inability to apply the knowledge she so easily memorized and her sketchy attendance. She was not accepted for the summer internship.
Choosing A Reference
Picking the correct reference is an important part of the job interview process. If God ever had to give a reference, I’m sure He would pick king David.
When picking a reference, it’s important to pick someone who knows you, appreciates your skills and abilities and possesses the ability to share that knowledge.
David knew enough about God’s character and His deeds to write and sing about them. Throughout the Psalms, David outlines God’s good deeds, mercy, patience, justice, kindness, support and His love. Sometimes David gushes. David gives voice to those who might find themselves speechless trying to explain God’s greatness.
What about you?
If God asked you for a reference, what would you say?
I’ll admit it, the reference I’ve given to the world has not always been consistent. Sure, I’ve always called myself a Christian but I haven’t always offered up the best reference for the One I say I love.
Looking back over my life I’ve provided the following references for God: My worry told others that I think God really can’t be trusted to take care of me, my rebellion told the world that I think my plans were better than God’s loving plan for my life, my apathy told the world that I feel God isn’t worth a whole-hearted love, my disregard for those who don’t know about God’s love gives others the impression that God love and grace aren’t worth acknowledging.
I’ve given God many references during my life. I’m sad to say some of them are not shining representations of my glorious, gracious, loving, heavenly Father. Even now, there are moments when I ignore an opportunity to give God the reference He deserves.
Checking Attitudes and Actions
As I read the Psalms, I have to check my attitudes and actions.
David knew something. It was something worth singing about. He knew a God who was rich in mercy, love and grace. He knew a God who was powerful and amazing. David knew a God who cares about His creation and intervenes on humanity’s behalf. He knew a God who was just but forgiving. Psalm 119 is the longest chapter in the Bible—no wonder—it’s a resounding praise of a God who is worthy to be praised.
If you are like me, and can look back at times in your life when you weren’t providing the best reference for a God who deserves the best. Start today. God is merciful, gracious and patient. He is a God of second, third and fourth chances!
If you don’t think you know enough about God to give a reference, look around you, He’s woven Himself into His creation. Look into His word, the Bible, and you’ll find the story of a God so in love with His creation, that He offered the sacrifice to redeem His fallen masterpiece.
Ask God to reveal Himself to you—He’s waiting to be found!
Father, thank You that Your love for me didn’t change when my reference for You was poor. Help me fall deeper in love with You. Reveal Yourself to me. Help me tell Your story of love to those who don’t know You.