Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Big Picture

1 Samuel 3

Not long ago Hillary Scott released a song called "Thy Will Be Done."  It's an incredible testimony about trusting God in situations that you know you followed God but it didn't go quite as you had planned or hoped.  It's filled with sorrow, pain, and incredible truths about who God is.  It's a reminder that despite what we see in front of us, He is in control and His love for us is greater than we can understand until we see Him face to face.

But getting to that point, the point where you can borrow the words of Eli and say, "He is the Lord; let Him do what is good in His eyes," takes time.  Faith that withstands the test of time isn't grown overnight, on the easy road, or without conflict.  It takes a significant amount of confidence to get from point A to point B without getting completely discouraged and walking away.  Confidence in God, who He says He is, and belief that He can do the impossible, only comes with experience, and experience requires commitment on our part to see some things through to the end.  Even the things that hurt, challenge, and threaten us with deep fears filled with insecurity and a broken heart.

When Jesus was on His way to be crucified, He was in pain.  He didn't enjoy the physical suffereing of His impending death, the mocking of who He was, or the devastation He saw on the faces of those He loved.  But He knew why He was doing it and what made it all worth it.  He was willing to move forward despite the aches running rampantly through His body for you, for me, for those we love.  And we are challenged to do the same.  To lay down our rights for the benefit of others.  To boast about our weaknesses, so that as Christ's power rests on us, others can see it and be strengthened in hope and turn to Him also.

As we run our race, it's easy to become hyper-focused on what we want Jesus to say to us when we reach the finish line.  We want to hear, "Well done, my good and faithful servant," and know we gave it everything we had.  But what if instead of living to hear those words when we die, we continue on our jorney looking back and deciding it's all been worth it.  Every ounce of heartache, every tear that rolls down our cheeks, every unspoken prayer that was answered differently than we'd hoped, because through it all, we grew closer to the One who loves us unconditionally.  What if we were to pray that the Lord will do what is good in His eyes, because we truly believe that His eyes see a big picture that rivals any masterpiece human hands have created.

Father, sometimes our fear is so much bigger than our faith.  Help us to stay strong in You, to lean on You when we feel like we can't stand a minute longer, and to trust that You know our needs and will meet them for our good and Your glory.  Help us to look back on where we've been with you and say it's all been worth it.  We ask these things in the matchless name of Jesus.  Amen.

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