Magnify the LORD with me! Together let us lift his name up high! (Psalms 34:3 CEB)
Magnify the LORD, our God!
Bow low at his footstool!
He is holy!
(Psalms 99:5 CEB)
Looking at passages like those above, it seems like Scripture calls for me to magnify the Lord. When Mary is told she is going to have a child who will be the Messiah she declares, “My soul magnifies the Lord…” The word magnify in that context means to exalt, to make known, to lift up God’s name, to declare God as the “Holy One”.
And yet, it seems like the greater reality is that I am the one being magnified. Not in the same way, not that I am being exalted, but that God is magnifying my soul as a way to examine the intricate workings of my life.
I picture God as a master craftsman watchmaker who is about his work fixing and tweaking my inner workings. I see God at his workbench with those funny looking glasses that have small lenses sitting about 1.5 inches from his eyes. He can see every problem, every piece that is out of sync. Nothing in my life is hidden from him.
And even when things look like they’re working fairly well, He continues to work. And so I ask, “Lord, why do you continue to look so hard? If things are working pretty well do you really need to work so diligently to find a problem? It makes me feel as if I am never good enough.”
And then, loving me, He responds, “I must keep looking and working. Even when the major problems are fixed and time is able to be well-kept, there are smaller issues. There are gears that are not quite aligned, and springs that must be tightened. If I don’t tend to these issues they can become bigger problems down the road. Where there is even a small amount of friction the workings can get work down. Where there is a misalignment the parts can get damaged or wear out too quickly. The beauty of your life demands such attention. If I did not love you and long to see you at your most exquisite I would not bother with such work.”
And so I find myself saying, “Thank you, God. Thank you for not leaving me where I feel adequate but working in me to transform me and change me that I might find my life ‘exquisite’. What an honor to be loved as such a valuable creation.”
Lent is the time when we purposefully let God examine our lives, even down to the most intimate places and the smallest of details. It may feel like we are inadequate, but the opposite is actually true. Only those who are loved and seen as precious get such attention from the Master Craftsman. Let Him work and you will find an exquisite life. And it will be all the more reason to magnify the Lord.
Holy high-five to you,