Reading: Psalm 8
Verse 4: “What is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?”
Psalm 8 is a song of praise that calls us to praise God. It begins and ends with the refrain, “O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth.” In between these bookends David recognizes both the amazing creation all around us and the connection that we have to that creation.
David identifies God’s handiwork in the heavens – “the work of your fingers.” Staring up on a clear night, taking in the cast array of stars each known by name, one is awestruck, moved, amazed. This is just one way that we can and do connect to God through creation. It can also come in the intricacy of a spider web or in the beauty of a flower or waterfall or in the power of a thunderstorm or… God is present in so many ways in the creation.
Then, in verse 4, David asks an awesome question: “What is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?” This question makes me pause. It brings to mind both times when I have been 1 in a crowd of a million and times when I’ve been the only 1 in a million acres – both remind me of God’s power and might, both call forth the humility of this question. It is good to ponder this question, to be humbled.
David answers this question in the next few verses. God does “crown with glory and honor” humankind. God did make us “ruler over the works” of God’s hands. Here we must be careful. If we carry the humility generated by the question with us, then we see a great responsibility and a great privilege in these roles. If not, it easily becomes all about me. May we choose to love creation as God loves creation.
Prayer: Lord God, what a world you have made and continue to make! There are so many ways that I see your fingerprints in all of creation. As I interact with your creation, may my fingerprints look like yours. Amen.