Once, while facing impossible circumstances regarding legal residency in her country of service, one of our mission workers heard from God. He said, “Which is more real, your situation or my word?”
Kingdom reality is often at odds with what we see around us. Though our circumstances are very real to us, they do not always tell the whole story with God’s perspective and plan. Consider some of these biblical reminders:
- Abram is nearly 100, and Sarah 90, when they have their first child, whom God promised to them 25 years earlier.
- Moses and the children of Israel are trapped between the Egyptians and the Red Sea, when God parts it to save Israel and destroy the armies of Pharaoh.
- God whittles down Gideon’s 30,000-man army to 300 before using them to defeat Midian and his army of 300,000.
- When surrounded by the army of the king of Aram, Elisha and his servant can see the hordes of angels ready to defend them.
- Though the enemy has an apparent victory in the death of Jesus, it is actually his ultimate undoing. God raises Jesus from the dead and not even the gates of hell will withstand the advance of his body, the church.
- Peter seems in serious trouble when the Jewish leaders imprison him. James has already been killed. In the night, an angel comes to free him and return him to his friends.
We could go on and on. The faith fact is that our reality is not God’s reality. His ways transcend our ways. Back to our opening story: our missionary received her residency against all odds, because on the day that her husband went to pick it up from immigration, the clerk he was working with took the time to find the paperwork and the document and handed it over, though it had previously been denied.
Knowing that God’s reality is not ours does not mean that everything always goes well for us, though. Moses was saved from death at the hands of Pharaoh as a baby, but thousands of other Hebrew babies were not. The brokenness of this world; disease, hate, terror, and death affect all of us. God does not always save us from the consequences of living this life here. He will, also, not always keep us from the results of our sinful, or unwise, actions.
What we can be sure of, though, is that God’s will is being worked out in and through our lives. He is the one directing our steps into the way he has laid out for us ; and, whether our life is easy or difficult, whether we have little or plenty, in sickness or health, whether we live or we die, God will be glorified in us as we seek to follow him. He is with us. He is for us.
Jesus said, “I am with you always, even to the very end.” Let us rest in that promise today and every day.