I just finished reading The Supremacy of God in Preaching by John Piper. The last part of the book was devoted to the ministry of Jonathan Edwards. John Piper told of a seminary professor of his who instructed his students to pick one ministerial leader and to thrust themselves into the life and ministry of that person. Piper chose Jonathan Edwards.
One statement made by Edwards really spoke to me:
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.
What is Edwards saying to us? He is pointing to the supremacy of God above all other things. The best that this life has to offer is but shadows in comparison to the majesty of God. The relationships we have in life are great, but they are not to be replacements for a relationship with God. We are not to settle just for the beams and streams but for the sun and ocean. It is also through our closeness with God that all other relationships flourish. When God is primary that which is secondary also will thrive.
God is the substance. The world often settles for the imitation and when they do that they are settling for less than what God has to offer. In our lives let us acknowledge the supremacy of God in all areas. When we see the sovereignty of God in our relationships and in all our paths, it is then that God can be more fully known.
For from him and through him and to him are all things.
To him be the glory forever! Amen. Romans 11:36