And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!”

 Isaiah 6:4-5 (ESV)

I’m not totally sure how, when or why it happened. I’m not even sure who is responsible. And, although I know the devil is ultimately behind the presence of all evil things, I can’t help but feel that the church is somehow culpable as well. But whether we know the details of how we got to this place, the fact remains that we have, on so many levels, lost our awe of the person and power of God. I believe this is a universal truth, but we need look no further than our own culture to realize just how far we have fallen.

As a little guy growing up, I can remember watching All in the Family and seeing my mom flinch when Archie Bunker would let one of his four-letter words fly—words that are not even noticed today. By even moderate Christian standards we have totally lost our sense of decorum and, most tragically, our willingness to protect innocent eyes and ears. It’s quite a leap from Archie Bunker to having segments of our population willing to violently defend sexually explicit drag shows being performed in presence of children.

Isaiah’s unexpected encounter with the presence of God in the temple forever changed His life and impacted his perspective not only on the culture he was living in, but on his appraisal of his own worthiness to do anything for the Lord. In what appears to be a brief encounter, Isaiah is witness to the power, holiness and the calling of God to be an agent of change in a generation filled with its own brand of ungodliness.

God demonstrates His grace to us in those special moments that are unique to all of us, in order that we might see ourselves as God does. And, when we do, that we might strive to embrace the holiness and grace of God that has somehow been clouded by a generation that has created a “god” in its own image.