A Study in Stewardship - Week of July 7

  • 2021 7 Jul

Discovering God's Design

Responding to God Sense-sationally

Verse: Psalms 148—150

Which of your five senses is most important as you express to God your adoration and praise? Which is most likely to stir you to worship? Perhaps you’re an auditory person. If appreciating and/or making lovely music is your thing, does your praise accompany the rendition? Psalm 98:4–5 invites us to “burst into jubilant song with music,” to praise God instrumentally—in one way or another to “shout for joy to the LORD”!

Do you take particular delight in the beauty you take in visually? Does the sight of a sunset, a waterfall or a masterful painting prompt you to hold your breath as your soul exhales its gratitude? Are your spiritual eyes fixed on God (see Ps 141:8)? In the words of Psalm 19:1–3, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them.” Do the works of God’s hands pour forth wordless “speech” to you, a visual message so universal that you are convinced it can be missed only by deliberately turning your back (see Ro 1:20)?

God created us with the ability to distinguish and appreciate fine nuances of taste. Do you respond in gratitude to fine food and drink? Have you noticed the rich banquet imagery throughout God’s Word? We may not experience physical hunger or thirst in the new heaven (see Rev 7:16–17), but, given the resurrection of the body, we’ll likely retain the capacity to enjoy culinary delights.

Then again, do your creative expressions incorporate texture? If so, you may be the kind of person who’s most touched by touch. In Matthew 14:34–36 we read that when the men of Gennesaret recognized Jesus, “they sent word to all the surrounding country. People brought all their sick to him and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.” Do you use your hands to touch and create in order to bring glory to God?

The woman with the alabaster jar of pricey perfume in Matthew 26:6–8,10 was moved by scent. If that sounds like you, whether your passion is nature, gardening, floral arrangement, cooking, candle-making or creating multi-sensory ambience in your home, you’ll understand her motivation. Has it ever struck you that the primary purpose of Old Testament animal sacrifice centered around the heady smell of the cooking meat? Over and over again the Bible’s early books repeat a refrain: “It is a burnt offering to the LORD, a pleasing aroma” (Ex 29:18). Our ability to smell calls forth associations. In Ephesians 5:1–2 Paul urges believers to imitate Christ, who “gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

Think About It

•  With which sense do you most often praise God?

•  Are you stewarding your five God-given senses in appreciative response to your Creator? In what ways?

•  What personal quality makes your praise beautiful to God?

Act on It

Today offer worship to God using one of your five senses. Perhaps choose the sense you use the least for a new perspective on worship.

This devotion is from the NIV Stewardship Study Bible by Zondervan. Used with permission.