Nothing catches Him by surprise!
Lord, it seems like you have no idea what I am going through – it’s as though it caught you by surprise!
When things go wrong in our lives, or when challenging times come along, we often feel like God has no idea what is going on! More often than not, things happen around me that do not make sense, and I am tempted to ask God why it appears like He has no idea what is going on!
I asked this question when I found out my son had autism. I wondered why this had to happen to us, and to my little boy. I asked why God would allow this into our family yet we had served Him faithfully for so many years. I was broken.
Then I heard a quiet voice in my spirit say, “I knew about this, and I knew you would be able to handle it.” Yes, we were surprised and shocked by the news, but the Lord wasn’t.
So, then, how do we encourage ourselves when faced by the unexpected?
Remember that the Lord understands things better than we do
Isaiah 55:8 ‘“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.”’ (NLT)
At times, a glimpse into the Lord’s mind seems like a great idea, especially when I don’t understand what’s going on! A couple of weeks ago, as I had a chat with a couple of good friends, we were talking about our future plans and what we desired the Lord to do in our lives. Interestingly, as of last week, the Lord had turned everything topsy-turvy in our lives, yet each of us had been praying and we were sure of the direction to take. Personally, I was left completely baffled!
Then I remembered that his thoughts are way beyond what my thoughts are or will ever be. He sees the end from the beginning. He sees the big picture, far bigger than what I can see or understand. And most importantly, he knows how to make everything in our lives work best to build our faith and relationship with Him.
I would also like to add here that the Lord always acts out of love for us; in other words, he always has our best interests at heart. He also protects us from dangers seen and unseen, some of which would totally freak us out. That’s why he is never caught by surprise, because he is all-knowing!
Let us take comfort in knowing that the Lord knows and understands what is happening around us, no matter how hard it is.
Remember that it’s all part of His plan
How is suffering part of the Lord’s plan for me? I have asked myself this question on several occasions, and I know you have too!
Some years ago I had a run-in with a client that resulted in me being ‘sanctioned’ by the management of the place where I was working. The sanctions here translated to a 50% loss of income – a big deal at the time! I asked God lots of questions, like “Why didn’t they listen to my side of the story?” “How will we make ends meet?” “Is my time here about to end, and should I look for somewhere else to work?” This was a difficult season for me, but I stuck it out, taking a day at a time, believing that it was part of His plan.
Jeremiah 29:11 ‘“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”’ (NLT)
After a difficult year and a half, the Lord turned things around for me, after another incident occurred between the same client and a different member of staff. The result? The allegations against me were finally proved to be baseless, and my income stream was restored.
The Lord was not at all surprised by this occurrence. Instead, he allowed it to happen so that I would learn to be patient, and to trust in Him as my provider. God is never surprised by what happens to us; rather, he allows it because it is part of His plan to perfect us and make us more like Him.
Trusting in God’s perfect plan for me is not easy when I am in a place of distress, confusion or pain, looking for answers and solutions. In fact, it takes a huge amount of faith just to acknowledge that He is in control! Whenever I find myself at this point, however, I take comfort in the following words from Psalm 139.
Psalm 139:16 “You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.” (NLT)
Now here is the real reason why nothing takes the Lord by surprise – He planned it all! God knew when I would be born, and He planned my life out long before I came into this world. This means that every joy, success, twist, and turn of this life is part of His plan, and because his plans for me are good, I can relax in knowing that He is in total control! How encouraging!
Let me finish this piece off with one of my favorite verses from Romans, one that reminds me that God is in control of everything in our lives and that nothing catches Him by surprise!
Romans 8:28 “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (NLT)
Hi, everyone! Thanks again for reading through this week’s article. I hope that you were reminded and encouraged to trust in God even when things get tough. Let me know your thoughts in the comments section, and please share this article with anyone you know needs to read or hear these words. Have a blessed week ahead!
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