Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Leaving Perfection Alone

"if you use your tool on it,
   you have profaned it"
Exodus 20:25

We're settling back into a routine today, after a busy couple of weeks.  Two weeks ago our church had Vacation Bible School for all the kiddles, and my kids and I helped out with that.  Then we had the one-day baseball camp my son attended, and the next day my sister and her family came into town, so we spent a lot of the week at my folks' house playing games and swimming.  All good stuff, but it was nice to spend the day at home today. 

Although we spent a lot of it "spring cleaning" my son's room.  But that's okay.  Very rewarding.  And it had to be done.

One of the fun things we did while my sister's family was in town was go to our County Fair.  My Awesome Girl had entered a couple photos, and they won awards, so we went to admire her work, and of course check out the pigs and cows and horses and sheep and goats and oxen and rabbits and...

It was fun seeing her photos ~ one with a blue ribbon and one with a red.  I've really enjoyed watching her photography talent blossom the last few years.  She takes pictures of things that seem ordinary, and then I see how beautiful a weed or a cobweb can be. 

It's also interesting to see what she does with the photos.  Most she leaves as is, but she also likes to experiment with effects.  It's amazing how photos can be enhanced with computers.  They used to say "pictures don't lie" but that's just not true anymore.  Now you can add and subtract things from photos, changing them entirely.  But you can also see them in black and white...

... or heightened colors.... 

Any number of changes that can make them even more beautiful or fascinating.

The other day I read a passage out of Exodus 20 that I thought was interesting.  It comes right after the Ten Commandments, and God is reinforcing a few, shall we say, guidelines.  In verse 23, He reiterates one of the commandments, saying: "gods of silver or gods of gold you shall not make for yourselves.  An altar of earth you shall make for Me... And if you make Me an altar of stone, you shall not build it of hewn stone; for if you use your tool on it, you have profaned it."

There's something very beautiful about the idea of God not wanting us to "profane" His work.  Certainly we can make beautiful things from what He has created ~ works of stone, or wood for instance.  And truly, in a way, our efforts of carving or chiseling or such is our only choice, since He made everything.  But there are times when trying to "improve" on His work is like scribbling on a Van Gogh.  It might be creative, but it's not better.

God is a creator, and we are His creation, and we are created in the image of our Creator, which means we are created to be creative. 

{I love that sentence.  I kinda have the urge to diagram it.  
But maybe that would profane it.} 

But I love the reminder that some things ~ His laws, His Word, His plans for us ~ are perfect.  Without our help, without our interference, without our attempts to modify or beautify.   Sometimes we just need to recognize the perfection.  Or trust until we do.

~ "He is the Rock,
His work is perfect;
For all His ways are justice,
A God of truth and without injustice;
Righteous and upright is He." ~
Deuteronomy 32:4

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