A Framework for Faith/Spiritual Vision
Today I gird myself/with the strength of heaven,/light of the sun,/brightness of the moon,/brilliance of fire,/speed of lightning,/swiftness of wind,/depth of sea,/firmness of earth,/stability of rock.
- Anonymous, Faeth Fiada (Irish, 8th century)
Forever, O LORD, your word is firmly fixed in the heavens. Your faithfulness endures to all generations; you have established the earth and it stands fast. By your appointment they stand this day, for all things are your servants.
- Psalm 119.89-91
Creation serves God's purposes in helping His saints to realize their calling to build the Church and seek the Kingdom of God. Celtic Christians were careful observers of the creation. They saw in each creature, power, force, or phenomenon an aspect of what God and His will for them. They invoked the creation for the provision or protection God intended it to give them.
In a lorica - or "breastplate" - poem, the writer called upon the aspects of creation with which he was familiar as part of the "armor" he hoped to be girded with for the day. He knew that Scripture calls us to be strong, to shine with God's truth and glory, to hasten with the Gospel and unto good works, and to stand strong and firm in the faith. So he looked to the different aspects of creation to lend him their peculiar God-given features, if only by reminding him of his calling.
It's good to be reminded by the world around us of what God commands and promises. He has ordained that all creation should serve Him by serving us, but we must apply ourselves to the task of understanding how this can be so. As we study the creation we gain glimpses of God's glory, and we see a reflection of what He calls us to be. So the creation serves by teaching and reminding us, and, in that way at least, lends to our sanctification and mission its many powers and wonders.
God speaks to us through two books - Scripture, which is primary, and creation. By studying the Scriptures daily we discover God's will for our lives and we learn how to relate to everything and everyone else for the sake of the Gospel. By studying creation - becoming familiar with its many and diverse creatures and powers - we see living examples of what God intends for us, and we are reminded and renewed in our calling to follow Jesus.
Seek God in His Word. But seek Him also in His world. There is much of wonder, strength, brightness, wisdom, and firmness there to help us in our calling.