It "all" fairly well boils down to this: In our fallen, spiritually blinded state of consciousness . . . we do not appreciate the glory of God. His glory includes His magnitude, His holiness, His loving, just "nature". . . .
Alongside that, we think ridiculously far too highly of ourselves. In fact, that's pretty much all we think about, though sometimes it is disguised in our acts of assumed "selflessness". It is a glorious thing to be graced with the Eyes to See in ourselves what wretches we actually are--when we catch that glimpse of--even in our presumed "good" works of "selflessness", in giving and serving--how even then there is self interest involved. If feels good to do things for others and almost always there is at least a very subtle trace of spiritual pride and self-righteousness. . . . In this world, in our condition, it is practically impossible to truly do anything that is not tainted with a degree of sin, of "missing the mark". But again, I say it is glorious and a wonder and a fantastic grace from God when you can See this truth and are not led away into the pretense of being somewhat righteous, a "good" person. This is what it means to be "poor in spirit". Mathew 5:3 says: "BLESSED are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven"!
It is in this desperate state that we finally realize and accept our complete, unmitigated need for a rescue, for a Savior. And even though we are not honestly seeking God, but only clever, self-crafted idols dressed up as a quest for God, He demonstrates His glory by condescending down to us, giving us the Eyes to see our desolate situation so that now we DO yearn for His deliverance; all glory to HIM--nothing in ourselves to boast of. . . .
In all of this . . . what I tend to see most of all . . . and I continue to suspect it is a profound, mysterious, endlessly wondrous truth in the whole thing at its core . . . is that what we have from the start . . . during the middle . . . and ongoing into eternity . . . is DEMONSTRATION AND WITNESS.
What do I mean by this? Well, I can easily see enough content for a book describing more in depth and detail what I mean and what I think is a primary revelation to be had in this whole experience (of creation, life, judgment, heaven, hell etc.) . . . but fundamentally what we have is that God is demonstrating His glory. He is an expressive God. And He is into relationship (a basic attribute of His shown in the mystery of the Trinity, being three persons in one being). . . .
"Demonstrate" to who? To WITNESSES. Most people who think in general terms of religion, spirituality, God etc., think that scriptures are about having rules set down--how to behave, to become "a better person", and secrets, techniques, methods, practices etc., for how to reach God . . . when the truth is much more interestingly and somewhat deceptively simple and straightforward. It is more about BEING A WITNESS. We are WITNESSES to the glory of God. This is our design, what we are made for, to be witnesses! God's glory is on display; all His many wondrous, awesome, frightening, inspiring, mind-blowing attributes are here, put out in time and space creation . . . with creatures made to participate as WITNESSES to the DEMONSTRATION.
When Paul and the other apostles went out to preach the Gospel, did they spend their time and breath and words teaching spiritual techniques of "the Way"? No. What they primarily gave was TESTIMONY of Jesus Christ, His death, burial and resurrection and how it fulfilled holy scripture. They were WITNESSES to His life and mission and this is mostly what they preached. Subsequent followers, even through the coming age of the martyrs . . . stood on their faith, their belief in the story of Jesus and His witnesses. . . . God's wide-ranging, deep, personal, good and holy attributes had been demonstrated through ancient history, recorded . . . and then through the Son's mission to redeem a lost and fallen people, to be kept for Himself for eternity--witnesses from time past into forever, to God's unending, unfathomable, worshipful glory!
note: thanks dear writer for asking about my son Alexander and the fires. He is still in what they call "red card" where they train intensively . . . for I think a couple of weeks . . . before they are available to be called to fires. He still has a week of that, where he is at the base not too far away from where we live. But then, yeah, he could be sent a number of places, but most likely will remain in the state, although you never know..... He is also expecting around July to be called up to go to "Academy" to train for "structure". That means he would be mustered into one of the city "structure" fire departments, which is kind of the goal for all fire fighters who aren't in a structure department yet, and that is something he has wanted since a little boy who wanted "to grow up to be a fireman" heh:)
Thanks for asking... I will try and remember to put in updates as the season progesses... God bless