“No one’s ever seen or heard…never so much as imagined…what God has arranged for those who love Him.”
1 Corinthians 2:9
Recently at a small group gathering, a comment was made about an upcoming event that would be happening in the new year. “2010?” a friend questioned. “I know it’s the new year and all but there is just something about ‘2010’ sounds like science fiction!”
Coming from a generation that grew up with the space program, we fully expected personal jetpacks and manned exploration of Mars by 2010. Yet with all the technological change in the intervening decades, our imaginations have become moribund. The ‘anticipated’ new cell phone, computer or movie only seems to add to the commonplace. With similar changes in our worship and overwhelming amounts of Christian information, I sense we have also diminished our expectations of God. What will it take to catch our attention spiritually?
Consider Habakkuk 1:5, “Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.” The prophet was warning Israel about consequences for failing to follow God. And history tells us He was true to His word. As a parent disciplines out of concern, our Father has followed through on His promises, be they positive or negative. In Matthew 7:11, Christ tells us, “If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” If He will correct us, how much more so will He bless us?
Just consider the differences in terms: God called His creation ‘good’…how much better can His ‘good’ be than our ‘best’ or ‘unbelievable’? According to Paul in his letter to the Corinthians, we cannot imagine what God has arranged for His children. Why don’t we recognize His gifts?
Simply put: impatience. Wanting something now prevents us from receiving God’s good gifts at the time He knows is best. Like a child too eager for a birthday or Christmas, we have tried to take over for God and supply our wants in our time. We read about Abraham being promised a family that would be uncountable or the Israelites entering a land flowing with milk and honey. While God’s plan was ultimately achieved, His people suffered for trying to make things happen on their schedule. But His discipline blesses us and prepares us for an even ‘better’ future.
While it may be 2010, let’s not diminish God’s blessing by our haste, but let us anticipate what God’s unbelievable arrangement will be for us in His time, not ours.