“This is how our souls climb out of their weariness toward You and cease to lean on those things which You have created. We pass through them to You, Lord God, who created them in a marvelous way.”
“The enjoyment of God is the only happiness with which our souls can be satisfied. To go to heaven, fully to enjoy God, is infinitely better than the most pleasant accommodations here. Fathers and mothers, husbands, wives, or children, or the company of earthly friends, are but shadows; but God is the substance. These are but scattered beams, but God is the sun. These are but streams. But God is the ocean.”
“Christianity is not religious escapism, nor is it overindulgent secularism. It is not escapism — we do not run from the world, for God has given us all things for our enjoyment (1 Tim. 4:4). The creation is ‘scattered beams’ — God’s artwork, full of glory and dignity.
But Christianity is also not secularism — we do not run to the world. We don’t feast upon the world for its own sake, because these are just ‘scattered beams.’ They are not the sun, and thereby are unable to bear the full weight of our worship and interest.
To be a Christian means we don’t look from the world, and we don’t look to the world. To be a Christian means we look through the world. Idolatry looks at the world in amazement. Worship, true worship, looks through it in amazement. To its source. To the One who is infinitely more amazing. More interesting. These things God has made — these shadows, these scattered beams, these shallow streams — are good. And God is better. This is what the universe is all about. This is the end of idolatry. This is the glory of God.”