I was in line at the checkout counter today at the Health Aid Pharmacy in New Haven. There was a little boy (about 5 years old) who wanted a sucker/lollipop off a lollipop tree on the counter. He didn’t end up with one. And after he left, one of the ladies behind the counter said, “It’s a good thing he didn’t get one of those. They’re very hot. He wouldn’t have ever wanted another one.” The women behind the counter knew the lollipops were a hot cinnamon flavor that would have been too hot for a 5 year old, even though the five year old thought he wanted one.
I immediately thought about things that I have thought I wanted verses what God has known I needed. Moving to and from Mason as a pastor are among those things. I believe God is behind Diane and I moving from the south western part of West Virginia to the north eastern part, even if the UMC Cabinet played a part. When we came to Mason, it’s not what I would have chosen, but God knew what He was doing. Our six years here has been a remarkable journey in which God has proven Himself over and over. God knew the high school Matt needed to go to. God knew the people here were exactly what Diane and I needed and we were what they needed. And I have to believe that us moving to the outskirts of Cumberland, MD to a little place called Short Gap, WV is what God knows we need and what the people in the community there need. And I have to believe that God moving Tim and Jami Edin to the Mason UMC is what they need and what the people here need.
Someone was in my office the other day talking about how God did something amazing in his/her life the day before. And this person said every time they start to drift away from God, over and over God has shown up in amazing ways in their life. And I said to this person, “How many times do you need God to prove Himself? Just how many times?”
I don’t need to ask myself that question (today). I do trust Him, even when it’s difficult. And I encourage you to trust Him. If there’s something you’ve been wanting or praying for, or something you’re disappointed about… tell Him. And ask Him to help you wait or make it through. And ask Him what He would have you learn and how He would have you grow in the process.
When we don’t know what He’s doing, we can rest assured that He does. JJ Heller puts it this way, “God, I don’t know what You’re doing, but I know who You are.” He’s the one who created you and sent His Son Jesus to save you. And you can trust Him.