How does God manage his entire creation? Has he had a plan, a theme, a metanarrative or something else which he follows that gives a unity to all of his efforts? Shepherds describes the relationship between the Creator and his creation, a relationship that is structurally integrated by the very core of who God is.
There is a design within creation that radiates from his personal, unique being. What God created and how he manages it is a marvelous extension of who he is and how he acts. This relationship between God and his creation is not patterned only on his essence or being, but on his powerful and loving will and acts.
Rather than a literary grid to which “theme” and “metanarrative” attempt to subject God's relationship with humanity, Shepherds recognizes that all of creation bears the eternal design emanating from God's very nature. Scripture is not a “story” about Israel or the church; it is not simply a story of redemption; it is a window into the eternal design by which God created reality and will eternally sustain that creation.