Greetings from the Tea Table! That is this past week's "surface of life." Ben Miller, in this sermon (did I mention that I've over and over recommended this sermon again and again?) gives a list of things that make up the surface of our lives. And this is the rest of the sermon in a nut shell:
"Many dark and disturbing thoughts are apt to arise in this thing. Few can carry up their hearts and minds to this height by faith, as to rest their souls in the love of the Father; they live below it, in the troublesome region of hopes and fears, storms and clouds. All here is serene and quiet. But how to attain to this pitch they know not. This is the will of God, that he may always be eyed as benign, kind, tender, loving, and unchangeable therein; and that peculiarly as the Father, as the great fountain and spring of all gracious communications and fruits of love. This is that which Christ came to reveal, — God as a Father..."
~ John Owen, from Communion with God the Father
"Attempting to comprehend the depths of this love, one may compare [Zephaniah 3:16-17] this Old Testament version of John 3:16 to a child on the seashore, digging a sandy trench to the limitless expanses of the ocean. The child stretches out her arms to gather the ocean's depths into her shallow pool."
~ O. Palmer Robertson
"Dig the trench, brethren."
The surface of life becomes life in the Kingdom when we are so suffused with the love of our Father in Heaven that everything we say, everything we touch, everything we feel is motivated by that great love. He's our Father! So this week's "surface" is all part of the path that we're walkin' on. We're walkin' with the King. Learnin' to love Him and to know how much He loves us. Strivin' to love our neighbor...extravagantly! Yearning for the day when our faith shall be made sight. We're children of a great King and that thought changes everything about us. We're not just so privileged to be slaves in His house; to pick up the trash on His grounds. We're sons! We're heirs to the Kingdom. We're ruling and reigning with Him in heaven. We're seated in heavenly places. We're robed in righteousness. We're set at His right hand. And He cannot fail. He will get us to heaven as surely as Christ rose and conquered death, He will get us to heaven!
"Oh for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer's praise!"