Many people scour the night skies, trying to track stars, planets, and meteors. A friend of mine spotted a spectacular comet recently and was in awe of the sight. On a clear night, looking up at the sky can easily prompt a sense of wonder.
Sometimes, though, instead of appreciating the beauty and order of what they're beholding as symbols of God's wonderful work, people may instead feel daunted. They may nurse feelings of insignificance when they think about the immensity of space.
In truth, reality is entirely beyond physical dimensions. And this throws a different light on one's place in the universal scheme of things. The Bible reveals that the universe is actually spiritual-rather than material. It also teaches that we are made in the spiritual image and likeness of God, the full embodiment of all God's qualities, such as goodness, purposefulness, lovingkindness, and benign power. God's image is not dwarfed by the immensity of a physical universe, but includes the universe of spiritual reality within his or her own consciousness. This fact is made plain by Christ Jesus in the Gospel of Luke: "The kingdom of God is within you" (17:21).
Christian Science, which was discovered by Mary Baker Eddy, explains what Jesus taught. Here is one statement from Mrs. Eddy's book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: "Man is more than a material form with a mind inside, which must escape from its environments in order to be immortal. Man reflects infinity, and this reflection is the true idea of God" (p. 258). This boundless view of our real identity is God's view-the true view! It represents the spiritual identity of each and every one of us, right now. God is expressing in every one of us His own idea-His own reflection. That leaves no grounds for us to feel unimportant, insignificant, purposeless, or meaningless. Without each of us playing a part in the expression of God, His creation would be incomplete. But this is impossible.
It's only possible to understand the truth that God's universe is vibrant and complete if you understand that you are vital to Him. Here are two examples: The ocean is made up of all the drops of water in it, and there is no beach except as the compilation of all the grains of sand on it. Likewise, there can be no universe of God without every individual expression of Him to make up its infinitude. So each of us, as one of God's distinct, eternal children, does matter. We do count. We are each essential to Him as an unmatched, individual expression of Himself.
To gain the conviction of this in daily affairs takes prayer and Christian living. That is, we need to associate ourselves with this spiritual view of creation, and to live life from that basis. The Bible says Jesus once watched a woman whom many considered insignificant (see Luke 21:1-4). She, a poor widow, approached the temple treasury for the collection of "offerings of God." Many rich men were there giving money-people who had much more wealth than she did. But Jesus perceived worth differently. The widow gave two mites, one quarter of a cent, to the treasury. Jesus commended her for putting in "all the living that she had." He indicated that it is how unselfishly an individual gives of what he or she has that determines the legitimate sense of self-worth.
How you employ the qualities of God, which as we've said you truly do include as His expression, always determines your sense of self-worth. It's fine to stand in awe of nature's beauty and immensity as symbols of God's greatness. But man represents the fullness of God. And we honor the creator first by accepting gratefully that we are vital to Him, and then by proving it in lives that glorify His goodness and power.
Are not five sparrows sold
for two farthings, and not
one of them is forgotten
before God? But even the
very hairs of your head
are all numbered. Fear not
therefore: ye are of more
value than many sparrows.
Luke 12:6, 7