God Knows

"Our confidence should be in the God who will provide the answer and not in the answer itself or the method of it."

GOD ANSWERED MY PRAYER, but not like I thought. I expected a sign, a flash of heat, a sudden drop of revelation knowledge. Instead, He gave me more endurance. The problem is still there (temporarily). I’m not worried about it ending at all. But what was nagging me is almost funny now. I prayed for help. People prayed for me to have help. The Holy Spirit made me even more patient. Not what I thought should happen.

We do this all the time. We plan out God’s response, how the prayer should end, and how He will bring the answer. We’re thinking we’ll go north through a populated area toward the Promised Land, but instead, find ourself facing the Red Sea. God knew what we did not, that the enemy up north was too strong for us, and parting the Red Sea, a piece of cake. I like cake, and I love when He sends me across on dry land.

Or when He shows up in the storm. Jesus sends the disciples across the lake ahead of Him, leaving Himself no way to cross the lake. Question #1, how’s He going to meet them on the other side? Then an unusually strong storm hits the Sea of Galilee, and “x-number” of hours later, the disciples are trying not to drown. Question #2, Why would He wait “x-number” of hours to walk out on the lake when He could see there was a terrific storm? Then, Jesus gets out there, and we’re told in the gospel of Mark, He would have passed them by. Question #3, WHY?

None of this went according to plan. These were professional fishermen who knew this lake. This should have been an easy trip. And there’s Jesus without a boat, and He waits until the height of the storm to walk out there and do anything. Not what we would have had happen. There’s also what happened with His friend, Lazarus. Hearing he was sick, why did Jesus wait four days to go see him? Martha and Mary expected Jesus to keep Lazarus from dying. Instead, with his friend seriously dead, Jesus brings him back to life.

Our confidence should be in the God who will provide the answer and not in the answer itself or the method of it. Here is faith. God delights to answer our prayers, but even greater, He delights in us. Our faith isn’t placed in the asking, it’s not in our choice of words, or even our motive, but it’s in our loving God who hears us and will do it. His way. Even if that way is unusual.

Maybe we needed more endurance, not simply for now but for the future. God knows us and His ways are perfect. Maybe the ending He has planned is far more incredible than our version. In fact, this is like Him. He’s likely to return from heaven with a shout and the blast of the trumpet of the archangel then raise the dead and catch us all away. Sounds perfect to me.

“And when even was come, the ship was in the midst of the sea, and he alone on the land. And he saw them toiling in rowing; for the wind was contrary unto them: and about the fourth watch of the night he cometh unto them, walking upon the sea, and would have passed by them.” (Mark 6:47-48)

“Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.” (John 11:39)

“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18)

Suzanne D. Williams, Author