Friday, January 22, 2016

What if I had a peep-hole?

I'm sitting in a Starbucks for a short while before I pick up Michael from his writing class. This is a rare thing for me. I'm enjoying the sunlight streaming through the French window panes next to me, and, honestly, not being needed by anyone. Those years of being a mom to little ones has changed to be sure, but not as much as I expected in terms of always being needed by someone. It's not that I am resentful- not at all- it's just that I am fully aware of how much I need time alone. I suppose it's just the way we introverts recharge.

I've been going over picture files from the last several months, finalizing my organization and storage of those files for 2015. These two were taken on the 31st of December: Jacob was spying on our neighbors through a knothole in the fence with his telescope!

So often I see a lesson in the pictures I take. What I see through my lens often nudges my heart to think a little deeper. Apart from my little boy needing to learn a couple things about privacy and controlling his curiosity, faith and the sovereignty of God was brought to my attention.

Maybe it's because it was New Year's Eve day and my thoughts were naturally wondering about the new year and all that it would bring, or not bring. Maybe it was because I was considering how the events of this last year were so different than I had hoped. Maybe it was simply because God knew I needed to remember... to just simply and quietly trust Him.

What if I could have a glimpse across the fence, that dividing wall between the present and the future? What if I could have a peek at what would transpire in the near future? What if I could have a long range view with my telescope? Could I handle it?

Of course I could not.

It is likely that a full view into the future would be crippling because I could not handle knowing ALL of the trials I have yet to meet. The sum total would be crushing. God only gives us his refining doses of trials at intervals that are good for us, not all at once because they would destroy us.

What if I only knew a little bit of the future, a knothole-size view? I'd likely jump to conclusions about cause and effect, or panic at what I saw, or simply sigh in relief and settle into proud complacency. I'd likely allow myself to dwell in my limited perception of the future. I would miss out on the present and fall into the trap of trying to change the inevitable.

Most devastating would be the fact that I would lose my trust in the sovereign God. We are not meant to know tomorrow, or what lies beyond 1000 tomorrows. We are to walk in faith today, right now. He holds our future safely for us. Our triumphs and trials are all held with purpose and great love in the hands of our heavenly Father. I cannot handle more than today, more than the faith I need for the present. I am thankful my future is held safely out of my reach.

I read this to my kids earlier this week during our breakfast time devotions:

"Man's steps are ordained by the Lord,
How then can man understand his way?"

Proverbs 20:24

And so, what about yesterday? The thought comes to me that yesterday and tomorrow are more similar than different because I don't understand it all. So much of God's purposes are veiled to my understanding. I don't understand the reasons for some of the pain, some of the situations, and the disappointments of the past. I can't always see what God is doing, why his plan unfolds the way it does.

But God stand outside of time. He is trustworthy and his lovingkindness is sure.


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