Thursday, January 12, 2012

..Trust God Steadily, Hope Unswervingly, Love Extravagantly

This is the view out my back door this morning.
I could barely see the sun through the clouds.

We don't yet see things clearly. We're squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won't be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We'll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!

But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love. 1 Corinthians 13:12-13

Last spring I determined that I would be outside every morning as the sun came up! So every evening before I went to bed I would check to see when the very minute the sun was due to come up. If it said 6:23am I was out there, not at 6:22 or 6:24 but at 6:23! The first morning I went out and I positioned my chair just so I could see it peak over the horizon. The morning was perfect, crisp enough that I through a blanket around my shoulders. The birds were singing and I found myself rejoicing in the beauty all around me while I waited. The trouble was, though I knew it came up in east, I didn’t realize that our house, my chair and me were not perfectly aligned with universe so I had to find the right spot to sit. The second problem I had was that though the sun came up, I couldn’t see it because of the trees, houses and barns that was in the way. So I found the sun came up but because of things in my way I didn’t see it right on time. And the last thing I found out was that sometimes there were clouds that blocked the sun all together. What’s a girl to do now?

Hmmm? So was I to believe that because I didn’t see the sun in the place I was looking, it wasn’t there? Isn’t it always in the same place? Because my view was blocked and I didn’t see it until later was it not on time? Could it be that on those days I didn’t see it at all, it was gone forever?

Many times I look for God in much the same way. I position myself for just how God is going to react (how I instructed Him to act) only to find that He in His wisdom did something different, perhaps even something I don‘t completely understand. Or maybe, though I thought myself to be in the right place spiritually, I wasn’t. Was there unforgiveness that stood in the way? Did you ever think God had forgotten all about what you prayed only to find He was there all the time, it was only later that you were able to see the results? Those results that came right on time! Clouds! I know about clouds that block your sight from seeing God. Maybe, like me, you have depression that seems to cloud your view at times, or maybe things have been bad in your life for so long that a thick black cloud envelopes you until hope is just a memory. Sometimes my view is blocked by very practical things like, lack of sleep, being too busy to pray or illness. But sometimes God is not ready for us to understand fully what He is doing in our lives, that’s where our trust comes in. We have to believe and trust in a sovereign God!

I looked up Sovereign in the dictionary and found that it means to have complete power and supreme authority. Isn’t that good? God is in complete control over everything! Who else could boast of having supreme power over everything? He is ruler over that “silly old sun” that I got up to watch each morning that spring. He alone is there all the time even if we can’t feel or see him. He alone times everything just right and is never late. He alone can always be found if we just look for him.

Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you. Jeremiah 32:17

When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. Acts 4:24

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