11 And it shall come to pass that the lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day.
We all know that human power is fragile and temporary. We understand that people and organizations which seem invincible today can be utterly irrelevant tomorrow. And yet, how easy is it to act as though they were permanent, to place our trust in mortal institutions, and to build our foundation on the pursuit of worldly status?
Wealth, positions of authority, and prestige may confer temporary power, but they will all eventually crumble, and all that will be left is the permanant power of God. If we have built our foundation on Him and on His truths, we will find ourselves on safe and reliable ground.
One of my favorite poems is “Ozymandias
” by Percy Bysshe Shelley. A traveler sees the remains of an ancient statue of a great king in the desert. The statue is in ruins: two legs with a shattered face on the ground nearby. The inscription on the pedestal reads:
My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!
The moral of the story comes in the form of a simple description of the statue’s surroundings:
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
Today, I will remember that worldly power and influence are unstable and undependable. I will build my foundation on my faith in God, with a recognition that He will always be there while mortal sources of power will all decay.