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“More Than You Expected” Sometimes when I go to Jesus, he lets things happen that I don’t understand. He doesn’t do things according to my plan, or in a way that makes sense to me. But if Jesus is God, then he’s got to be great enough to have some reasons to let you go through things you can’t understand. His power is unbounded, but so are his wisdom and his love. Nature is indifferent to you, but Jesus is filled with untamable love for you. If the disciples had really known that Jesus loved them, if they had really understood that he is both powerful and loving, they would not have been scared. Their premise, that if Jesus loved them he wouldn’t let bad things happen to them, was wrong. He can love somebody and still let bad things happen to them, because he is God—because he knows better than they do. If you have a God great enough and powerful enough to be mad at because he doesn’t stop your suffering, you also have a God who’s great enough and powerful enough to have reasons that you can’t understand. You can’t have it both ways. My teacher Elisabeth Elliot put it beautifully in two brief sentences: “God is God, and since he is God, he is worthy of my worship and my service. I will find rest nowhere else but in his will, and that will is necessarily infinitely, immeasurably, unspeakably beyond my largest notions of what he is up to." If you’re at the mercy of the storm, its power is unmanageable and it doesn’t love you. The only place you’re safe is in the will of God. But because he’s God and you’re not, the will of God is necessarily, immeasurably, unspeakably beyond your largest notions of what he is up to. Is he safe? “Of course he’s not safe. Who said anything about being safe? But he’s good. He’s the King.” How can we have peace in Christ during circumstances that are prone to create anxiety and/or despair? Where in your life are you waiting for Jesus to provide help?
Mark 4:35-41 (ESV) -
35 On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, "Let us go across to the other side." 36 And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. 37 And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. 38 But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, "Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?" 39 And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, "Peace! Be still!" And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. 40 He said to them, "Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?" 41 And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, "Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?"