July 3, 2012

The Odd Bits

Last night I had a terrible dream. In it, several events hammered at me yelling that my life was useless, that everything I have done has no significance. In that dream, I was isolating myself, and the accusing voices were relentless. Even before waking, I knew this was a spiritual battle and the “accuser of the brethren” who is called Satan was attacking me. Still in the dream, I began repeating my fears aloud for that often exposes them for what they really are. In doing this, I began to wake up and actually said aloud, “I am believing lies.”
Now, a story comes to mind of a person who questioned the piecemeal and ugliness of her life. God showed her that she was looking at the wrong side of a piece of tapestry. It made no sense to her until He showed her the beauty of other side. This is how life is — with a strand here and a knot there, most of it seemingly unconnected and meaningless. Each bit by itself makes no sense, at least until it is seen from the perspective of God. 

This is exemplified in an incident in the life of Jesus. He was travelling from one place to another and became tired so stopped at a well and asked for a drink.
Jacob’s well was there; so Jesus, wearied as he was from his journey, was sitting beside the well. It was about the sixth hour. A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” (For his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) (John 4:6–9)
This seemed such an ordinary event. However, one thing led to another. The woman’s question gave Him opportunity to answer. She asked more questions and eventually the woman realized that He was the Messiah. She dropped her water jug and ran home to tell others about Him.
Many Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me all that I ever did.” (John 4:39)
The devotional comment is about the “bits of wayside work” and he calls them sweet. He does not see any ordinary events as tangles or knots on the wrong side of the weaving, but as parts of a bigger and more beautiful piece of art. He reminds me that all the odd bits, when life is over and I can see them from the other side, will turn out to be more important than those bigger events that to me seemed most significant. 

Then the devotional writer adds that the King’s servants are always really on duty, even while some can only stand and wait. Our lives are never useless in the hands of Almighty God, for we are His workmanship.

Lord, the dream showed me how easily Satan can discourage me when I measure my value in terms of what I can see, forgetting that You are weaving something that I cannot see. Your Word says that I am Your “workmanship (a weaving), created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that I should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10)

When I walk with You, I can expect to experience thirst and fatigue, just as You did. I can also expect to meet needy people who have questions, even in ordinary days. However, unlike You, I may not see what happens as a result of my response to those needs and questions. You may use those bits and pieces to bring one person or an entire town closer to Yourself. You may not show me any of that part of the weaving until I get to the other side. In the meantime, I’m to walk in faith, trusting You to do as You wish with me, Your tapestry. I’m also to stop listening to the liar who ruthlessly wants me to stop listening to You.

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