Wednesday, March 9

Trusting God's Gracious Foresight

Often--probably more often than we'll ever realize here on earth--our Lord keeps us from besetting troubles. We're likely to never know these, thus, we're also not likely to give God credit for them. One biblical example of this is found when God mightily orchestrated Israel's deliverance out of Egypt. In a sentence you could almost overlook, we read:
When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them by way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near. For God said, “Lest the people change their minds when they see war and return to Egypt.” (Exodus 13:17
Now, whether God said this aloud to Moses or we're allowed into the heavenly thought doesn't really matter. It wasn't up for a vote. Our Lord knows our weaknesses and will (it seems OFTEN) prepare the way before us, putting up protection even (or, perhaps especially) when we are unaware. But if we look with eyes of faith we might see it. If we meditate upon the works of the Lord, we stand a far better chance of recognizing his actions. What a blessing when we realize such things are the very work of heaven! These are not "flukes" but they are the very matter of the divine beneficence. The Lord God will take us through trials in order to mature us. True. "Yea, even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, you are with me" is a well known supporting text on this. But he will also keep us from evil attacking us, if that evil will overwhelm us. Perhaps it is for this reason, and in light of such a wonderful truth, that Paul can write by the Spirit, that "no temptation has taken us but such as is common to man. But God will, with the temptation make a way of escape." Why? "That we may be able to bear it" (1 Cor. 10:13). 

Praise. Praise God's wisdom to know which is best. Praise his love to so care as to select the very trials we should suffer, and the ones we should avoid. Praise his power that can do any of this at will. Indeed, what manner of man is this that the wind and waves, and armies and nations obey his will? Good question. Great meditation. Wonderful praise. And we do well, very well, to be much about it. 
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.  (Jeremiah 29:11)

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