#183 (29/05/05)
Once Upon All Time: Creation – Part 1

The Message

By: Robert A. Schuller

Special Guest

He is a member of our church and the director of the Hour of Power Russian Ministry in Moscow. Andrei Danilenko is the Director of the Russian Farm project in Russia. He was recently presented an award by the National Economics Society of Russia by the Government of Moscow for the Best Manager of the Year for 2004 because of his work as the President and CEO of Russian Farms.

Special Music

" Joyful, Joyful.. "
" From All Who Dwell Below the Skies "
" Yes, God is Good! "

“ Let Thy Holy Spirit ”
“ Open Our Eyes ”

HOUR OF POWER ORCHESTRA – “Procession of the Nobles”
KATHERINE JENKINS – “You’ll Never Walk Alone”

The MessageThis summer, as we continue our 50th anniversary celebration of the Crystal Cathedral ministries, we are presenting a very special production called "Creation." We believe it is going to be one of the most incredible ministries that God will use to turn people's hearts and minds to Him. And we have the privilege, as a congregation, to be a part of it. My sister, Carol, wrote and is producing and directing this production and she is going to share with us this morning the story of how God gave her this dream only to find out that God had given this same dream to my father years earlier.

Carol Schuller Milner:

In 1992, I was a mother of three small children and pregnant with our fourth. I had just put them to bed. My husband was away on a ministry trip, so I was alone in my praying, meditating and worshiping. I put some music on to assist me. It was a song, "Creation Calls" by Brian Doerksen, which painted all the aspects of creation. I heard words like "ragged mountain peaks silhouetted against the night sky" - "the cry of a baby " - "a starry night in the desert." I found myself just raptured. And I started to see all of God's Creation and I felt like I was in another place. I heard the words, "How can you say there is no God when all around Creation calls?" When the song ended, I could hardly catch my breath, and I exclaimed, "There is supposed to be a Glory of Creation!" And I could see it happen in the Cathedral.

The next morning I telephoned my dad, but he was out of town. Two or three days went by; I was busy solving toddler arguments, so I completely forgot about it. Then some nights later, my husband had not yet returned from his mission trip, I had a dream. And in the dream my dad was walking into my home and I said to him, "Dad, sit here on my sofa," and I played this same song for him. Then the dream ended and as I woke up, I experienced a replay of that same moment with the passion and excitement of "Creation" just surging through me and I believed God was getting my attention again.

So the next morning I again called dad. He was home, so I said, "You must come over to hear about my dream." So he came over, walking in the door and sitting on the sofa, just like the dream. I played the song repeating the words. As the music ended, he looked at me and said, "Did you know?"

I said, "Know what?"

He repeated, "Didn't you know?"

I replied, "Really, I don't know what you're talking about - know what?"

He said, "I have been trying for three years to get somebody to do this story. We have a Glory of Christmas, and a Glory of Easter, we need a Glory of Creation to complete the trilogy of our faith."

I was stunned. "Are you kidding me?"

He says, "No."

I said, "Good, then I just encouraged you to keep working on it." As he got up to leave, He stopped at the door and he looked back, and said, "Write it!" And I said, "What! That's wasn't in my plans."

Creation Calls

I was kept so busy being a mother, still every once in awhile I would envision a scene of the Creation here in the Cathedral. That's what I love about our Creator, how God comes to you in the middle of doing your everyday work. My husband then said, "Carol you must begin to write your story of Creation so not only our children but all children can understand how great God is."

So I started writing. I began to research in depth all the accounts of the Creation. As I studied it more and more, I found so many layers and I began to realize how important the beginning of a story is. And that the Bible is one great big story made up of many little stories. I realized how extraordinary Creation is. It sets up so much understanding for the rest of my faith. I was praying a lot because this was a hard assignment to write about Creation. Creation is about a place and a time none of us really know about.

In The Beginning

So how am I going to tell the story of Creation and not have it be like only reading Genesis 1? How do I make it come to life? As I was praying, all of a sudden I had this thought K What might it have been like in the beginning? And I began to just let my mind focus on that thought. That led me to the next thought: What if heaven and earth (the supernatural and the natural) K what if these realms (the ethereal and the tangible) K were never, ever meant to be divided? What if this is all just how it might have been? What if, in the beginning, they were all supposed to be one realm, one place? And it just opened the world up to me. Wow! That would be so cool! And so this is where I began to develop the scenes and the staging, which show that things on earth dont feel like theyre absent from heaven, and things of heaven dont feel separated from earth. So, instead of the way life is today, at Creation, earth and heaven were one and people on earth were really experiencing heaven.

At Creation, Heaven and Earth Are One

After I had that breakthrough in prayer, I met with Michael Guillen, the former scientific consultant for the ABC Network. When I shared with him my concept for the Glory of Creation, he got excited about it and helped me make it scientifically irrefutable. What is the Glory of Creation about? Creation is a journey, a journey of the soul. We take you on a journey, through a grandfather, we call "Gramps," and he is telling a story to his grandson, "Michael." Michael, a preteen, adores Gramps, but he thinks that Gramps is a dreamer and a storyteller and not grounded in reality. But Michael loves science and Gramps doesnt know about electrons and protons and electromagnetic radio. Michael loves to look at things, to observe and analyze them. And so there is this dialog that takes place between these two. Michael is not quite sure about things "out there" so we begin the story as we go back in time, all the way to nothingness.

And Gramps talks to Michael about Creation, the very beginning,. He says, "Michael, you have got to believe in something big, or youll miss all the beauty. You will miss the miracle of creating something from nothing. You see, Michael, before anything else ever exited, there was a Dream and the Dream birthed miracles."

"I dont believe in miracles, Gramps."

"Dont believe in miracles? You dont believe in something big?

"You need to believe in something big

or you will miss all the miracles."

Michael, lets take a journey K"

So the Glory of Creation takes you on a journey all the way back to where you feel like there is nothing and in that nothingness, we introduce you to The Presence, God. "And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters." (Genesis 1:2)

As you sit here in the Cathedral you will have an experience where a fog rolls in and you can hardly see anything, but you hear a sound moving through the space, moving all around you. Then the fog begins to stir and when you hear a melody you will sense The Presence. At one point in the story, Michael asks Gramps about The Presence and asks, "Why do you call it The Presence, Gramps? Who can ever put a name to it? Its too big."

"Yeah, "Gramps says," I know, but something we care about always has a name. I call The Presence, God, because He is so real, even though I dont see God, even though I cant touch Him, I sense Him. I sense Him near me in the night when Im walking alone and a breeze picks up and my heart stops just for a moment, and my mind is still and a longing stirs deep inside me, in my soul. Michael, then my soul stretches out to heaven."

Then Michael quietly says, "I like that."

Creation Continues

Im only sharing with you a brief glimpse of the Glory of Creation today. The story unfolds when Adam and Eve appear and you see their special relationship with their Creator, God until Evil comes, and heaven and earth separate and a sadness sweeps over all humanity, in this great loss. What I really want you to understand is that these two worlds, heaven and earth, never were meant to be separated and our Creator, God, is still at work restoring this relationship.

This miraculous story of how Creation might have been VV once upon all time, is not my story. Its a story that belongs to all humanity, the very origin of who we are and, my goal is that when people leave the Glory of Creation, theyll know that The Presence, God, is so big that He created the entire universe, and they will also say, "He knows my personal world and He will visit me in the night."

I think we are on the edge of an amazing time to be able to tell the Glory of Creation and thank you so much for all that you, as a church, are doing because it is going to be worth it. Its always worth giving away a piece of heaven. Bless you all.

Robert A. Schuller:

This church has always been mission minded. We always will be. We dont look internally what is good for us, but what does Christ want? What does God want? We look at our community and say how do we bring our community into the fullness of Gods grace? Now thats what the Glory of Creation is all about. And so were very honored and privileged to be able to have this incredible production here in the Crystal Cathedral. It will be a ministry that will lead people to a greater understanding of who God is and how God wants to touch our lives. The tickets are available now for performances beginning June 9, through July 17, 2005. You can go online at http://www.hourofpower.org/ or you can call 1-800-549-6177 and you can purchase your tickets by telephone.

Let us pray:

Dear Heavenly Father, we thank You for the privilege we have to be used by you to do tremendous things for the Kingdom of God. So continue to touch our hearts, our minds, and our souls with Your Presence and use the Glory of Creation to be a seed that will multiply around the world to be a harvest to Your Kingdom. Amen.

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