Surprise!!!

You know that moment…the lights are off, people huddled in every corner of the room. The unsuspecting victim walks through the door and with the turning on of the lights, everyone yells Surprise!!!

I was that ‘victim’ on my 40th birthday. Without all of the details (which would take way more time than two minutes), my wife threw the biggest surprise of my life.

I walked into the large room at our church and there were over 100 of my friends and family waiting for me. SURPRISE!!! Totally and completely surprised. I had no idea.

surprise

The Word – surprise

The Worth – Why is it that we are surprised when God does something great?

Sure, it is understandable when the Red Sea parts. Exodus 14

Or when the walls of Jericho fall down. Joshua 7

Or when the bush is on fire but not burning up. Exodus 3

Or when Jesus turns water into wine. John 2

Or when Paul prays and the boy returns from the dead. Acts 20 

In 1 Thessalonians 5, there is a single verse that has had my attention for many years. I would say it is in the top three of my favorites.

vs. 24 “The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.”

Or, in my translation, “If God said it, it will happen.”

It may not happen when or how we would like to see it but God is sovereign. It will happen as He said it would. So I ask again, why are we surprised when God moves?

The Work – Can I challenge you? This is a challenge for all who follow Jesus.

Live in such a way that you are not surprised when God does something awesome.

God gives us so many promises in His word. We can count on every one of them. So when you pray, let your faith expand. Know that God will accomplish what He said.

And don’t need to be surprised when it happens. =-)

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Exiled! part 4

Have you ever broken a promise? I have. And other people have as well. In a word, it is disappointing.

God never breaks His promises. And that is awesome.

  • The last three weeks have seen the Israelites being exiled, commanded to stay and settle in Babylon all because God has a plan for them.
  • You can click here to read Exiled! part 3. It might be good to catch up. =-)

So now, in the last post of this series, we will see the best part about the Israelites being exiled.

Let’s look at a couple of verses to start things rolling. Jeremiah 29:12-14 reads, 12Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares theLord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

God is making some promises in these verses. In fact, I will copy these verses again but I will add some underlines this time.

12Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.b I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares theLord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

When I read this, it seems very obvious to me that God has a plan. I feel like He always has a plan. But in that plan, there is always our part. We have to obey God in order for His plan to succeed. Even though God is all-powerful and could do anything He wants to, He has chosen for us to be a vital portion of His plan.

He needs us.

He set it up so we could play our part and both of us win. A true win-win situation.

Just for fun, here are those verses one more time. This time, however, I have put our part in bold letters.

12Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.b I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares theLord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

  1. Call
  2. Pray
  3. Seek
  4. Find

God wants us to give Him everything. Our whole heart. Jesus said the same thing in the New Testament.

If we call, pray, and seek Him with all our heart, we will find Him.

And that is just one of the many promises that God has never broken.