So much mess is going on around us these days! Is it just me or does it seem like there’s constantly something catastrophic being featured on the news? I mean, I know that chaos has been going on for quite some time now, but does it seem like the chaos has gone up a notch in the recent days? It truly breaks my heart. But it’s not just the what’s going on in the news. Maybe life in general has been really tough for you lately. Maybe you feel like you’ve been in a pit for quite sometime & you feel like you will never get out. Maybe loved ones all around you are suffering or struggling in some way, shape or form, and you feel absolutely helpless.
At times it seems like life just won’t give us a break & our hearts are overwhelmed with all the chaos that surrounds us. So many times I get tempted to just lose hope. To give up. To throw in the towel. But that’s exactly what the devil wants. I know my Jesus is coming back & with all that’s going on these days I’m hoping that it’s soon. I’m thinking that Satan is thinking the same thing & he’s putting things into overdrive, creating division, chaos, & evil to seemingly “overtake” the world for one last hoorah. But praise be to God, he won’t get very far with that & it will be his last.
As we wait for Christ’s triumphant return & victory, it’s going to be hard. We are going to be pushed, tried, & pruned to the very edge. There are going to be times we’ll look at all that’s going around us–in the world & in our personal lives–and we’ll be tempted to give up hope. But those are the moments when I fall deeper in love with my God. In those moments, in the smallest things, He will give me a gentle whisper reminding me that He’s in control. He’s got this.
Do you know that story in 1 Kings 19 when Israel, yet again, goes cray cray and, fearing for his life, the prophet Elijah gets overwhelmed & is ready to give up? Right now he’s freaking out. He’s at his breaking point. Then God gives him a gift. A sweet reminder of His Presence.
The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. (1 Kings 19:11-12 NIV)
In the midst of all our crap, we often expect God to show up in the most powerful, jaw dropping way possible, right? We want Him to blow the socks off the naysayers & teach the devil who’s boss. Sometimes that’s exactly what He does. And sometimes the way God shows up isn’t exactly what we were expecting. Sometimes it’s the opposite of what we were expecting. But even still, He proves to us that He is the one that is in control and I can’t help but fall deeper and deeper in love with Him.
I have a big imagination. Huge! So when I’m going through life’s trials & tribulations, I imagine God showing up in this grandiose gesture that will make everyone want to come to Jesus and/or renew their faith. But I’m going to be real with you, I can probably count on one hand the times that He’s actually showed up in that way. I’m not saying that because He can’t, because trust me, He absolutely can. But He doesn’t because He knows me & He knows better than me what I need. Instead of showing up in a powerful wind that tears mountains or shatters rocks or causes earthquakes, He shows up in a gentle whisper that can only be heard if I’m willing & paying attention.
In those whispers He reminds me of His Presence, my hope is restored, & I’m filled with a peace that passes all understanding. For me, these moments can simply be feeling a cool breeze across my skin on a hot day, looking up in the clouds & seeing all of His magnificence, or hearing someone laugh. It’s those simple reminders just for me that God provides letting me know that everything is going to be ok. Yes, there’s still going to be chaos swirling all around me, but in those moments, He reassures me that He wins in the end. He tells me to not give up hope & to continue to hold onto His promises until then.
Maybe you’re going through some stuff right now that seems near unbearable. Maybe you’re overwhelmed by just turning on the TV and listening to the news. Maybe you’re feeling helpless and ready to give up hope. Can I encourage you today to be still & listen for God’s still, small voice? Allow Him to reassure you & remind you that everything is going to be ok. God will show up in the smallest things, but it’s in those small things that I pray make you fall deeper & deeper into His arms.