It can be easier than it ought to be to miss so much about the Lord even if we worship Him regularly, are involved in ministry, and have a daily quiet time. Like so many other things and people dear to us, we can almost take much about Him for granted unless we take time to get a glimpse of some of the millions of millions of things about Him that we rarely notice as we walk through our days.
He is the God of the possible.
And I am persuaded He wants us to see the possibilities far more often than we do. But I am not talking about those of us who tend to see possibilities as dark shadows because there is no darkness in Him, and He operates easily in the midst of the darkest of situations.
If we don’t see Him right away, it can be easy to think He doesn’t see us or what we are going through. How unfairly we can judge Him!
More often than we realize God is at work on our behalf before we know we need it to be so.
That couldn’t have been clearer to our family than what happened recently when our adult son was dealing with a watery eye that quickly led him through several specialists resulting in a shocking diagnosis of a fast-growing lymphoma tumor in his deep upper sinuses. You see, God allowed that watery eye to be such that our son checked in with his optometrist without any idea of why that would be important or that God was already at work.
He also could not have known how and why God would use the speed of the appointment to then see an ophthalmologist who soon after sent him to an ocular surgeon. We all know what it is like to wait for an appointment and wait on tests, but these appointments were happening only a day or two apart as were CT scans, MRI, biopsy, and all the rest.
Within days the diagnosis was clear and in less than a week he was headed into his first round of chemotherapy. Our heads were nearly spinning, but God was looking out for our son before he even knew how much He needed God to do that.
Even though we may not always see something like this happen, it cannot diminish when it does.
That speed may well have saved not only our son’s eye, but his very life. There just is no other like Him.
But don’t expect Him to show up in the same way all the time.
A friend of ours has been in a complex medical crisis of more layers than I could begin to describe and everything has been going slow — the opposite of what we see with our son. Results of tests and biopsies are inconclusive or delayed, but guess what? God is in this mix as well. In the delays, several of the long list of organs that were not functioning well and could be at risk are now beginning to be clear of any issues. No, not all and tests are still out on three big things, but God has still been at work in what was as many as a dozen things that were very wrong and concerning.
Yes, God is the same and consistently true to Himself, but He doesn’t do things in the same way all the time. You can see that through HIS story.
He created humankind with only one boundary that could not be crossed, and humankind failed, but that was not the end or even the beginning of the end. He had a plan for that which would give us an opportunity to make another better choice.
In Lisa Wingate’s powerful book, The Story Keeper, she describes it this way:
“…no matter how many wrong choices we’ve made in the past, we can always decide to make the right ones today. The past need not determine one moment of the future.”
But that is something the enemy doesn’t want us to believe. He wants us to believe we are lost and lost to God as well. He wants us to forget that even when Adam and Eve failed and went into hiding, God knew exactly where they were and covered them.
Have we missed the truth about the Creator in the creation story and the role each of us has to play?
“The biblical doctrine of creation is not just about where we came from; it’s about where we are. It’s not just about who we are, but whose we are. It’s not just a statement about our past; it is a calling to a future.”
James K.A. Smith
Is it possible you have missed the expanse of what you/we have been designed for?
“To understand the world as God’s creation is to hear rumbling in the world itself as a calling.When the Spirit gives you ears to hear and eyes to see, creation is a gift that calls – it is a chamber of God’s glory that resonates with an invitation.”
James K.A. Smith
Are you missing HIS possibilities and getting tangled up in the weeds along or even in the path you’re on?
As Morpheus might say to Neo in the pop film, The Matrix, has the world been pulled over your eyes? (It can happen easily when we are flooded with sensory stimuli all the time.)
This week our son is just past the midpoint of chemotherapy treatments. Many of you know how brutal they can be, but just prior to starting the fourth round of six planned treatments his oncologist ordered a PET scan to see if treatments needed to be adjusted and how effectively the protocol was working.
As we and many others had prayed, we were believing God was at work in, through, and beyond the great medical team He arranged to fight this war with the tumor. Prior to starting round four, the oncologist showed him the scan from June and the one just taken.
The evidence was stunning – no tumor could be seen. Our son was in remission even though the additional treatments would be needed to squelch this tricky disease we know as cancer.
There is no one like Him and whether that evidence had come or not, it is still true because He sees the big picture as well as all the little details we don’t even know are going on.
But we need to pay closer attention.
In Smith’s book cited above (You Are What You Love), he reminds the reader of our role in creation. Most of us know we are called to be image bearers, but I love what he also adds: “You are called to unfold creation’s potential.” And, “You are called to occupy creation.”
This week’s great news about our son gave us a glimpse of God at work in multiple ways including how doctors and scientists and researchers have been used to unfold creation’s potential.
But you know what? None of us should need something this big to awaken us to our role in HIS story and what He wants us to discover about Him every day.