Not Suprised

Surprises can be loads of fun, like receiving a homemade German Chocolate Cake for your birthday. (See photo!  Yes, that's the husband.)   Another awesome surprise is unexpected money.  Who wouldn't want a surprise like that?

I've had many great surprises in my life.  Far too many to list, but one of my top 10 surprises was when our son unexpectedly arrived home early from Northern Asia.  That was such a happy and joyous occasion.  I couldn't stop smiling.  He was home, safe and with us.  That was a welcomed surprise.

However, I do realize that not all surprises are happy ones.  There are many unwelcome surprises in life and sometimes these can even cause us to question our faith.  Like sudden unemployment, the death of a loved one, relationship issues, sickness or even the loss of property or possessions.  No one would ever jump out from their hiding place and yell, "SURPRISE your house just burned to the ground!" 

Yup!  All surprises are not welcome.

Recently, someone near to me experienced some unwelcome surprises.  Even as the disappointing news was relayed to me, I didn't feel concerned or worried for this family.  A single phase poured over me like a healing ointment.

"God's not surprised by this."

We don’t know the storms ahead of us, but He does. In His infinite wisdom, He knows the what, why, where, when and how of all our situations.  He sees our lives playing out from beginning to end, not moment by moment.  Nothing we have gone through or are going through or will face in the future is a surprise to our God.  

We may be frazzled when we are caught by surprise, but God is NOT SURPRISED nor unprepared!  He knows the events of my future and yours before we experience them.  I don't know about you, but for me that equals a peace that passes all understanding no matter what the outcome. 

In Romans 8:28 (GW), God gives us an island of hope to stand on when we get blindsided.  It's a place to drive a stake in the ground to hold on to when doubts rush in and we feel our lives have turned from peace to disstress. 

We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God—those whom he has called according to his plan.

A few verses after that, in verses 35, 38-39, we find more encouraging words to hold on to when troubles or trails take us by surprise.  

 "What will separate us from the love Christ has for us? Can trouble, distress, persecution, hunger, nakedness, danger, or violent death separate us from his love?  …The one who loves us gives us an overwhelming victory in all these difficulties.  I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love which Christ Jesus our Lord shows us.  We can’t be separated by death or life, by angels or rulers, by anything in the present or anything in the future, by forces or powers in the world above or in the world below, or by anything else in creation."

The greater the unwanted surprise, the greater God will show Himself.  Remember the three Hebrew boys in Daniel 3, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.  They faced death in a fiery furnace.  God was NOT SURPRISED but these boys were when He showed up. 



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