“Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!” (Psalm 139:14 NLT)
Recently I heard a friend say: “You’re never in a moment God hasn’t designed.” Think about that. I remember some moments when it seemed God was a million miles away. Like the moment my wife told me she was more committed to another man than to me. When the doctor told me my son had leukemia. When I sat at my dad’s bedside while the life drained from him. There are others, but you get the point, as I’m confident you’ve had such moments. Did God design THOSE moments?
What was my friend’s intent? Think about it. We serve a God who is omniscient and omnipresent. What does that mean? It means He sees the moment of your death as clearly as He sees the moment of your birth and every moment in between. It means He sees those moments when your heart is breaking and nothing makes sense, but He not only “sees” them, in a similar way as we view the scenes of a movie or a play, He is living them with you – HE’S THERE IN THAT MOMENT WITH YOU! And knowing these moments were coming, He’s been preparing, behind the scenes, in ways we never see, how He’s going to walk us (or carry us) beyond these crippling moments. In other words, He’s designing the moments we’ll need to heal and to mature and to grow more and more like Him.
Jesus understands, like no other human being, what it’s like to be truly human, in love with the only true and living God. How does He know? Because He was God in human flesh, but that same true and living God that was embodied in our Savior, Jesus, that created in Him the desire to know His Father intimately, fills and empowers you and me when we invite Him to be our Life and Guide. He’s not only watching our lives, He’s experiencing every second of it with us. And because He knows us so intimately, He knows exactly what we’ll need to build us up and not tear us down when the storms of life attack us.
While, as Jesus-followers, we believe God is the Divine Benefactor, the “cause” behind every good and perfect gift (James 1:17), are we to also believe that God’s design causes the bad things that happen in our life? Absolutely not! But He can and will work through every circumstance to bring us good and to use, even the horrific times in our lives, to mold us ever more closely into His holy likeness (Romans 8:28-29).
How do we better understand how all of this works? Bask in His presence. Allow His majesty to envelop us, enabling us to not only “see” Him or “feel” Him, but to experience His presence in much the same way as we experience the sheer joy of diving into cool water on a hot, summer day. Just as the water surrounds us, commands us, refreshes us, exhilarates us, enables us to experience our aliveness in unique and joy-filled ways, such is the Spirit’s desire to awaken us to His life in us as our hearts are filled with His praise. But His majesty isn’t experienced like the immediacy of a microwave. NO! Sensing His Holy presence is more like something simmering in a crock pot, slowly emitting the inviting aroma of His love, His life, His joy in being with us and being the center of our attention.
Like a husband and wife enjoying the warmth of an embrace, wishing the moment will never end, so the Lord longs for those moments when, in our hearts and minds, nothing matters more than being with Him – enjoying Him, listening to Him, embracing His heart and longing for our hearts to be one with His.
Just know that in your busyness, when the Lord isn’t even on your radar – you’re on His. He’s with you and for you and He’s engineering circumstances in your life in ways that will allow your heart and His to intersect. But be careful, He’s sometimes easy to miss. He’s not a bully, demanding your time or attention. He’s more like a child, wanting to get the attention of their parent, not so much with their voice, but with their eyes, their countenance; their presence. Ever seeking to convey to the one they most love on earth how much it means to them simply to be recognized, affirmed and loved by them.
Similarly, God wants us to understand and respond to the longing of His heart just to be with us, not because He “needs” us, but to help us realize how much we need Him.
That’s when we’ll begin to understand we’re never in a moment God hasn’t designed.
Blessings, Ed 🙂
One thought on “God’s Design”
Good stuff. I really needed that today Ed. He is good!