This morning I thought more about the countless and sometimes very personal ways the Lord will display or reveal His glory to a single person or a group of people. I first read, again, the account of Nathanael meeting Jesus for the first time. Jesus revealed His glory to Nathanael in such a deeply personal way. Nathanael asked Jesus how it is that He knows him and Jesus simply responds, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” (John 1:48) and then Nathanael’s immediate response is “Rabbi, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!”
I’ve always wanted to know more of what Nathanael must have been thinking about in that moment alone under the fig tree right before Philip invited him to “come and see” Jesus for himself. Was he praying for wisdom or direction or answers? Was he crying out for help? I don’t know, but Nathanael certainly knew, and his decision to accept Philip’s invitation to “come and see” changed the trajectory of his life forever.
Jesus “revealed His glory” to Nathanael and, yet, it was so drastically different than the way He revealed it just a few short verses later in front of a crowd of people at a wedding when he turned water into the best wine people had ever tasted.
“Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee. He revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him.” John 2:11
I love this about Jesus. I love that He will reveal His glory in seemingly insignificant moments along the path just as powerfully and beautifully as the big, public moments. I was reminded of the Winter Snow song again by Audrey Assad.
“Could’ve come like a mighty storm
With all the strength of a hurricane
You could’ve come like a forest fire
With the power of Heaven in Your flame
But You came like a winter snow
Quiet and soft and slow
Falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below”
I love that Jesus doesn’t need a big crowd of people around to display His glory. I love that He desires to display His glory even if (at that moment) only one searching person actually sees Him, believes Him and embraces Him. It fascinates me and humbles me that the God of Universe will bend down so low and touch a single receptive heart like this. In a strange way, turning water into wine is almost expected from a big God…but speaking to and loving a single soul sitting quietly under a fig tree…that’s a miracle!
Show us your Glory today, Lord. “Let every burning heart be holy ground!”