Tuesday, December 19, 2006

God does what God does

Last Thursday I had a conversation that I have never had before (by choice) and will never have again (again by choice). The conversation was with Daniel, our intern. We had both talked with a student in our ministry, L, earlier that afternoon. She was wondering why things don't go easy for her and was asking for us to pray for her being able to get into a class to graduate on time. Both of us prayed for her.

Daniel mentioned in our conversation that he couldn't help but think about how easy things go for him most of the time. In his transition to another school housing, acceptance, transferring credits, and other little things just took care of themselves without much effort. I anticipate more of the same. As Daniel and I talked, I actually told him something I think fairly regular...I just don't ever say it. I told Daniel that I am not surprised things are going well for him. His life compared to L's is much more focused on God, much more in pursuit of godly endeavors, etc. Of course God is going to make things more easy for him.

Our conversation was much more complex than this. I told him my hesitancy to ever say something like this. I always think of the life of Job in situations like this. That keeps my mouth shut...as it should. Then I began to explore being able to discern God's will. With equal hesitancy I always balk in presuming to know his will for sure. I told Daniel that I think we need to allow the Holy Spirit guide us in times like this. We can know God's will through his Spirit...it just takes a listening heart. And on the conversation went...meddling in the activity of saying how God works in people's lives.

On my way home I picked up some Chili's. It was good. By the end of my meal however, I was having some major indigestion. Then the thought occurred to me that this was the same feeling I had with my kidney stones a while back. I began downing water like a madman.

The rest of the evening was spent in my room, mainly in the bathroom. I threw up my whole meal and more. Four hours of horrible-ness!! I couldn't keep even the water that I continued to drink down. And the pain continued to get worse. Only once I prayed to the Lord to take away my pain (toward the end). I don't know why I didn't cry out to him earlier.

Right before I prayed a dreadful thought occurred to me. I am convinced that the thought (voice?) was from the Lord. The thought was, "Do not presume to know how I work." As I prayed, I asked for relief so that God could be glorified. That is what I am doing now. I am telling you that I believe God caused my pain (in Job-like fashion) to humble my prideful presumptions.

I warn you: do not presume to know how and why God works in people's lives. Let us, however, be the ones God uses to accomplish his will.

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