The Father Who Loves and Waits
This past week has had its moments – good, difficult, scary, heart-wrenching, and yucky.
The good – spending some treasured time with my 2-1/2-year-old grandson.
The difficult – tending to two little ones (my grandson and a foster child), both in diapers and both experiencing viral diarrhea.
The scary – falling down the stairs holding my grandson and smashing through the gate at the bottom of the steps. In my grandson’s words: “It was scarrry!”
The heart-wrenching – hearing about the stories of two foster children in an emergency placement, one with acute needs. How it makes the heart ache to think of such needs, sometimes desperate and deep-seated.
The yucky – ending my week with my own viral illness (I wonder where that came from?). I had forgotten how weak, tired, and helpless such illnesses can leave us.
But as I rested from my week and my illness, I was reminded of the One who sees, hears, knows, understands, and cares. Jesus instructed His disciples: “Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows” (Matthew 10:29-31).
Jesus values you and me – not because of who we are or what we can do – but because of who He is. God, in His infinite love, sent His only Son, Jesus, into the world to save us and give us eternal life (see John 3:16). He values all of us, including the little ones, the hurt and bruised ones, and the weak and seemingly, useless ones.
In this world we will face our share of difficulty. Jesus, Himself, told His disciples: “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33b). As Jesus told His disciples about all that was going to happen before He was crucified, He further stated: “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace” (John 16:33a).
In our fallen world, we will never find real peace. Yet, we can know peace in Jesus as we take our problems and difficulties and turn them over to Him. We can trust Him with all of our questions, sorrows, burdens, fears, troubles, worries, pains, and hurts. He, in turn, will replace them with Himself – His peace, guidance, direction, strength, joy, and hope.
One day the trials we know on earth will be over as God establishes His kingdom on earth and makes all things new. Revelation 21:4 states: “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” This is the hope of all who place their trust in Jesus Christ. For now, Christ is waiting. You see, God doesn’t just love those who love Him. He also loves those who have turned away from Him, who have rejected Him and He wants them to come to know and trust Him before its too late.
When I think of why Christ waits, I’m reminded of Paul’s statement to the Romans: “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18). As we trust our momentary troubles to Christ, He can work in us to make us more like Him, work through us to encourage and help others, and ultimately, reveal His glory to others. I pray that God will take all of my moments from this past week – the good, difficult, scary, heart-wrenching, and yucky – and use them for His glory. And I will rest and joy in the One who loves me, values me, who even knows the number of hairs on my head!