A young friend and I discussed the principle of how giving generously is often rewarded by blessings that come in from unexpected places. I told her a few stories about Christians who experienced surprises from God when they freely gave to others and added that I don’t know how that works.
She (not a Christian) replied, “I guess a person would have to be God to figure it out.” How true. We do not understand the mind of God. His plans are seldom what we would plan and are always a surprise when He reveals them to us.
“Seek the Lord while he may be found; call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:6–9)
A few weeks ago someone asked if I believed in healing. Of course I do. He wanted to pray for me so he did. I know God could have healed my irregular heart in that instant but I shared with him that I trusted the Lord to the point that healing or not, He knows what He is doing. In the days since then, God has taught me much about myself and about Him that I could not have learned had I been healed. His thoughts are definitely higher than mine.
Many years ago, my hubby was not a Christian and seemed uninterested. We were living in a city that was huge and full of many religious groups and philosophies. The odd part was that God clearly told me to stay home rather than go to church on my own or with the kids. We listened to good Christian programing on the radio, but I was severely criticized for not attending a church. I was concerned too as this city is known for many false religions and cults. I didn’t want to pick the wrong thing.
After a few months, we had some concerns about one of our children’s safety where we lived and hubby decided we should go to church. God indicated that I keep my opinions to myself and let him pick the place. He used the Yellow Pages to find a Baptist church near our home. The sermon that Sunday was strange and from the Old Testament, not a message that I even remember. However, the Lord used it to speak to my husband and He was saved that day! God’s thoughts are definitely higher than my thoughts.
Our family has story after story of situations where we prayed and God answered with a surprise. I’m convinced that He is not only creative, but He cannot be predicted nor does He do the same thing twice.
Right now, I feel at a junction. My health may or may not be vastly improved when this pacemaker gets hooked up. I pray for opportunities to share the love of God with others and some days, all I want to do is sleep. Life is totally unpredictable. I’m surprised when others say I am a blessing to them. Who would have guessed? God does things with five loaves and two fish that are offered by little children who have no idea what He can do with them. Our part is to obey.
If anyone thinks being a Christian is boring, then shame on whoever gave them that idea. We serve a God who is full of ideas and surprises, all based on His great love. He knows what is best for us, but also goes beyond all we can ask or imagine! Following Jesus is an adventure filled with surprises.
Jesus, the classroom of life has been busy this past few weeks, even with all the naps and lack of ambition on my part. You always know what You are doing and I’m absolutely certain that You smile while You prepare the next surprise answer to my prayers.