Be Still Know
Romans 8:28 NLT
‘And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.’
Recently speaking to a gathering of older folk, something I am committed to as I invest my life and experience into exploring, with others, spirituality and ageing, a key question was raised. It concerned Katey’s MS and whether this was the work of the devil. I have thought this through in great detail; if only I could lay our pain at the door of Satan. Yet, this whole view pits God and Satan as equal forces for good and evil. This cannot be, for God is uncreated, while the devil is a creation, a fallen angel who is at war with humanity. In Job we understand that Satan must have God’s permission to mess with Job’s life. Indeed Job’s struggling faithfulness offers a declaration to God’s faithfulness in the face of impossible odds.
I guess in any suffering, all our navigation aids fail and we drift aimlessly upon the ocean, unable to control our fate, however much we desire to do so. That is in some ways the very essence of suffering, the fact that it is unfair, intrusive and beyond my control. How can any element be of any benefit? It steals my strength, distracts me from my sense of purpose and leaves me washed up upon a foreign shore I neither recognise nor welcome. But I believe that Paul invites me to embrace this cancer, this abnormal intrusion, as a part of God’s purpose. This surely suggests the orchestrator is God, whose promises are for my welfare and not for my destruction (see Jeremiah 29:11).
So what is the purpose to which I have been summoned by the whispered voice of God? It is no more and no less than to prove faithful to my creator and my redeemer. He is a Lord who does not choose on the basis of human concepts of perfection and success. He accepts my act of surrender and seeks to demonstrate the authenticity of a life that owes nothing to the normal constraints that circumscribe humanity’s sojourn in the earth.
QUESTION: What unanswered questions do you live with?
PRAYER: Lord God, your ways are not my ways and there is much I don’t understand, but I trust in your goodness.