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Behind the Scenes #1—Shock and Awe

In a world that seems to be falling apart at the seams, the human heart has a tendency to despair. Down in the weeds of woe, we feel like we’re wandering in a maze with shifting walls. We recognize our own inability to navigate it successfully; so we look for guides, or maybe even a helicopter that will swoop down and rescue us. Then we find that our erstwhile saviors have only led us deeper into the maze. But the God of the Bible rules over history. As we consider his work behind the scenes, especially in events which seem like calamities, we can fine tune our faith so we’ll stand fast even when the walls seem to be closing in on us.

Look among the nations: Observe! Wonder and be astounded! For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if it were told. Habakkuk 1:5

2500 years ago the Babylonians were routing the Assyrians and Habakkuk was terrified! But God was working. Just because he said this to a prophet who lived five hundred years before Jesus, doesn’t mean that we can’t expect his similar mysterious involvement for us today. Like a surgeon cracking a chest to replace clogged vessels on an ailing heart, God is working. We are astounded that such work produces health. Like Army Rangers storming a compound to destroy an enemy, God is working. We are astonished that such effort results in peace. Jesus picked up on these words and stated clearly that God was working in his day, through him. It wasn’t what people expected, and they didn’t believe it, though they were told. The Messiah on a cross was a stumbling block to his countrymen and foolishness to the nations. We are awestruck that such an outrage as the crucifixion of the Son of God accomplished redemption! So we shouldn’t be surprised when seemingly horrific events occur in our lives from time to time. Inexplicable as it may seem, God is at work. Shockingly, others may intend evil for us, but God intends good, that we might be conformed to the image of his Son, having faith pure as gold, refined by the fire of God’s forge.

All-wise Father, enable me to look closely and to appreciate the wonder; then help me to rejoice with glory-filled joy.


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