Summary: God Revealed Part 2
All Things New: God Revealed Part 2
Sunday, May 6th, 2007
One of the things that I remember doing together as a family when I was growing up was watching the Wizard of Oz every year. I think it was always on on Thanksgiving Night. Back then, we didn’t have cable and the 9000 channels you can choose with that, we didn’t have a VCR, you couldn’t TiVo something and watch it whenever you wanted, so when something like, The Wizard of Oz came on, something that we could all watch as a family, it was an event. We’d make popcorn and all settle in to watch the movie. There are a couple of things that I remember about this movie. First, my brother always cried when the flying monkeys made their appearance. He wasn’t afraid of the mean talking trees, the munchkins didn’t bother him, the wicked witch of the west was not a problem. It was the monkeys. I can remember my mom asking him if he was going to be alright and if he wanted to watch it and he always said yes. As soon as the monkeys appeared, he would freak out and start crying. Of course, being the compassionate older brother, I would wait until we were almost asleep that night and make flying monkey noises from the top bunk so he’d cry again. Those were the days!
I also remember the part where they first stand before the Great Oz. They stand, shaking, in this huge chamber, after all the things they had to go through to get there, and this voice echoes all around them and tells them what they have to do to get the Great Oz to grant their request. It’s an impossible task, something that they should not be able to accomplish. When they question him, Oz acts as though they are a nuisance and he dismisses them quickly, with a shout. It’s intimidating and scares the lion so bad that he runs out of the room and jumps through a window. Oz was not what they expected.
I think that there are a lot of people who have this kind of perception about God. They know that He’s big, they know that He’s powerful and they picture Him speaking in a big booming voice and commanding us to do whatever He wants us to with no thought as to what we want or are asking for. Many believe that like the wizard was, God is too busy and too occupied with running the universe to care about us.
But Dorothy and her friends didn’t have the right picture of who the wizard was. When they returned and stood before the Great Oz again, they made an interesting discovery, behind the curtain, was a small and insignificant man who was playing the role of the Great and Powerful Oz. They had gone out in search of the only one who was powerful enough to meet each of their needs. A way home, a brain, a heart, and some courage. They were looking for the only one who could provide everything that they longed for and wanted. They thought they had found him, but when the curtain was pulled back, they found someone who could not live up to their expectations.
So many people today have huge need sin their lives, big gaps that they are looking to fill. They are searching for what only God can provide. They are searching for peace and for meaning and purpose in life, they know that there is more to life and are desperately seeking what that is. They look many different places and try to satisfy those needs with different things but find that nothing else in life can fill the place that was created within us to know God and to fellowship with Him. As they search, there may be bells and whistles and billowing smoke, like with Oz. There was enough to distract and to confuse and disorient, but in each case, when the curtain is pulled back, when what they are chasing is revealed, there is disappointment.
There is none but God that can truly satisfy. There is none but God that can truly live up to and fulfill the claims that He alone can make. There is none but God who possesses the characters and attributes that He does and who possesses them in perfection, fullness, and completeness. Whereas every other god or religion or self help idea, or faith placed in anything that has its roots in mankind, will disappoint, when we begin to pull the curtain back on God, we can’t even get it open more than a crack before we are overwhelmed with how much more He is than we imagined. Moses asked to see God’s glory in all its fullness and was granted but a glimpse because God said that no one could see His face and live. In every instance where God reveals a bit of His glory to man, the reaction is the same, face down with a sudden understanding of how sinful we are and how perfect God is. We see it with Moses, Isaiah, Paul during his conversion, with John on the island of Patmos, and with others, in our humanity, we can’t handle the full revelation of who God is, of what’s behind the curtain.