Most of the time, life’s reveals come to me in retrospect. “Oh, now I see why that had to happen that way!” But after many years of repeating that to myself over and over, now, in some moments, the images slide together in focus, and I comprehend that—Aha!—God is at this very moment providentially moving about in the world, through human action, to bring about his will for his glory and my good. I don’t know what he has planned as the outcome, but there are things he is doing today that are instrumental in accomplishing it.
A few summers ago I wrote this post after the weather in Pittsburgh had seesawed back and forth for several days between drenching rains and bright sunny skies. I have been often reminded of the lesson in it these past few weeks. Yes, we’ve had our seasonal stutter start to spring, but we’re also experiencing on a grander scale uncertainty and confusion as a result of pandemic, economic instability, and the loss of what we’ve always considered normal. Now more than ever we need the exhortation that we not, as Bridges says, “deprive ourselves of the peace” of knowing that the hand that sends it is good, wise, sovereign and perfect.
Can I say, “I can be satisfied in all things because God’s ends are my ends”?
As I contemplate this new year, I pray that, along with changing out batteries and light bulbs and stinky old dishrags, I’ll switch out my thinking and my habits. That I will no longer fear being out of control, but that I will bend the knee and rejoice because HE is in control. That I will meditate on the glorious bounty of God’s sovereignty and His goodness and His kindness, and put on faithfulness and trust and submission as the new creature in Christ that He has made me to be.
That the very presence of adversity is the evidence that God is dealing directly with my heart. There seems to be a connection between the deafness of my spiritual ears and the pain and discomfort I feel in life. Pain and discomfort—I get it, how it’s a conduit through which the Lord will work patience and longsuffering and faith.