Sunday, October 17, 2010

Recognizing the Awesomeness of God

by Jen AlLee

I am often baffled by the children of Israel. The Old Testament is chock full of stories where God's chosen people doubt him, question him, even rebel against him. Now, I'm not saying I expected them to be perfect. But you would think that after seeing him do miraculous things, such as parting the Red Sea, the people would have a bit more faith.

Jesus' disciples weren't much better. They hung out with the Son of God for three years. They walked the roads with him, sat in boats, slept under the same roofs. They saw him heal the sick, raise the dead, and walk on water. Yet they never really seemed to understand his mission. At least not until after his resurrection.
I'd like to think that if I lived back in Bible-days, I would have recognized the power and majesty of God. If I had stood before Jesus, seen what the disciples saw, surely I would have gotten it. I mean, how can you miss it when the miracles are right in front of your eyes?

But it's really not that simple, is it? If I'm honest, I know that God shows me miracles every day. The beauty and power of his creation is all around me. It's all around you. Any of you ladies who've given birth know exactly what I mean. Or think of our own bodies. The human eye alone is a marvel that can't be duplicated in a lab. Only the Creator of the Universe could make something as amazing as that out of nothing.

Still, I doubt. I let worry creep into my life. I try to fix things, certain that if I don't, everything will fall apart. I forget, or ignore, that God is so much bigger than me. He's bigger than my troubles. And he's more than capable of providing for me in ways I could never imagine.

There's a scripture in James that I first came across a few months ago. Now, it seems to pop up all over the place.
Look here, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we are going to a certain town and will stay there a year. We will do business there and make a profit.” How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone. What you ought to say is, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.” Otherwise you are boasting about your own plans, and all such boasting is evil. (James 4:12-16, NLT)
I don't believe James is telling us not to plan ahead. I think what he's condemning is when we make plans without consulting the Lord. When we move forward, not out of prayerful conviction that we're doing God's will, but out of fear that we must take control and make things work... that's when we get into trouble.

It's a lesson I need to learn daily. My prayer for all of us is that we will rest in the Lord's goodness, knowing that his plans are the best plans.


This devotion originally appeared at The Pastor's Wife Speaks


  1. I think it would be a supernatural feat for us to really -fully, consistently- understand the awesomeness of God. We are so very limited by our realities and He knows that about us. Maybe that's why we get little doses of it to remind us each day.

    If I really understood the magnitude, the indescribable glory of our God, I'd have to be on my face in awe. I mean the angels do and they haven't been able to stop singing and worshipping!
    Perhaps being a bit clueless is part of the plan, too!

  2. Even after reading such cautionary tales as that of Abraham and Sarah and Hagar, I still find myself falling into the thought pattern, that I can help God move a little quicker. And that's with the Holy Spirit actually dwelling within me and helping. Can't imagine how difficult it must have been before the age of grace.

    Thanks for the reminder Jen! Maybe we can just put this post on repeat? How does quarterly sound?

  3. The main theme God has been teaching me since July has been to not try to figure out and plan the future. Just trust him for the strength, peace, joy, etc... to get through the next day and not worry beyond that. It's so hard for me. I want to have everything planned and figured out and even a plan B in place before I move forward.

  4. Good morning, ladies! Good to see you all. Here on the western side of the US, I'm getting ready to head off to church. Those of you in more eastern time zones are probably back already. Hope your day is a great one.

    Deb, you're totally on target. If we really comprehended even a fraction of how great God is, we'd be nose to the floor. I just want to get a handle on the basics... My God is SO big and SO powerful and SO loving that it's beyond my comprehension... so it would behoove me to trust him a little more :+}

    Lisa, I've thought about that, too. What it must have been like living before Christ's sacrifice. I can't imagine it.

    Dina, the planning thing is hard, isn't it? I don't necessarily need to have everything planned out in advance, but once a plan is made, I hate it when it changes. So that's what I deal with. I just wish God would share his time table with me... but then I wouldn't need faith, would I?

  5. I think this would make an excellent quarterly post!

    Thanks so much for sharing. I loved the comments from Deb, Dina and Lisa too!!

    God bless you all today!

  6. Thanks for the sweet devotional today, Jen. I seem to break away from a heart of gratitude with pathetic frequency, forgetting all God has done for me and Who He is. I'm blessed by your reminder.

    Happy Sunday, everyone!


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