A Priceless Speck of Dust

Look up into the heavens! Who created all these stars? As a shepherd leads his sheep, calling each by its pet name, and counts them to see that none are lost or strayed, so God does with stars and planets!

(Isaiah 40:26)
Credit: nasa.gov

Are you very good with numbers? So good that thinking of the product of 2,000,000,000,000 and 100,000,000,000 doesn’t immediately overwhelm you? Ha! You are really good then.

But what if I told you that those numbers represent a conservative guestimate by some of the world’s top scientists, of the number of stars in what they describe as the observable universe i.e. there are 2 trillion galaxies, each with 100 billion stars in the regions of the universe that available technology currently allows them to observe? Might that start to become you know… a bit overwhelming? Especially when you consider what else is out there?

While no scientist will swear by their telescope, some estimate that the galaxy, in which we live – the Milky Way, has 300 billion stars. So it is completely understandable that David wrote: “When I look up into the night skies and see the work of your fingers—the moon and the stars you have made— I cannot understand how you can bother with mere puny man, to pay any attention to him!” (Psalm 8:3-4)

In God’s grand scheme of things, we – you and I, are but specks of dust. The mind-blowing wonder of grace then is how much value God chooses to put on that almost invisible speck.

Since that night when God said to Abraham “Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them.” (Gen 15:5), mankind still stares in awe into the vast abyss. Maybe Abraham could count a few dozens; today scientists can count a quadrillion, still, we all are probably further from the truth than from where we started. Yet Isaiah tells us, “as a shepherd leads His sheep, calling each by its pet name, and counts them to see that none are lost or strayed, so God does with stars and planets!” (Isaiah 40:26)

Beloved, make it a habit to look up into the heavens and let your soul sing as did the soul of Carl Boberg who in 1885 wrote the poem that has now been set for us in the hymn that declares;

How great thou art!

Father, seeing the wondrous works of your hands, it is amazing that you place so much value on me as to seek me out.

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