I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed as the sand of the sea…(Genesis 32)
I have always loved the ocean, and so God’s comparison to the children of Israel to sand of the sea has always struck a chord in me. “Sand of the sea” always brings to my mind the beautiful coastlines of my childhood years, and somehow comforts me. I am always filled with hope thinking of the “sand of the sea,” because there sprang from one, and he and his wife far past childbearing years, a posterity that numerous. Somehow the magnificence of sand and sea seems to testify that nothing is impossible for the Lord.
And though the sand of the sea may be innumerable to man, God knows the number. He spoke to Moses, saying:
…and innumerable are they unto man; but all things are numbered unto me, for they are mine and I know them. (Moses 1)
Recently, I saw some beautiful photographs of sand. Not the usual, ‘Gee, I wish I could visit that beach’ photo with the hammocks and the palm trees. No, these photographs were of particles of sand.
Did you know each of these particles of sand is absolutely unique? Did you know their beauty rivals that of some of the most beautiful gems? I thought it so incredible that these sand particles are like “cornerstones, polished after the similitude of a palace” (Psalms 144).
As my children and I looked in awe at these photographs, we talked about the fact that, while we have looked at sand, we could not see its beauty without looking at it through the proper lens. How true of each other!
If we look at each other as God sees us, we are not just another person, but a beautiful, unique, gem–with the trials and challenges of life leaving us only more beautiful and polished than before. And though there are billions upon billions of us, He numbers each unique, beautiful child–for we are His and He knows us.
This is a paradox of man: compared to God, man is nothing; yet we are everything to God.
The photographer of these amazing photographs, Dr. Gary Greenberg, has a book called “A Grain of Sand” available. We are going to add it to our home library.