Our Awesome God
- Wednesday, September 06, 2006
Then in 1936 they decided to dig a well on the property. After saving up their money, they found that they only had $75 to pay for the well--the digging, the installation of equipment, and any other associated expenses. When the man came to dig the well, Mr. Franklin asked him where he would like to dig. The man said, "Mr. Franklin, I can see into the ground as far as you can." So Garland Franklin pointed to a spot and said, "Dig right there." So he started to dig and hit water after going down only 75 feet (most of the other wells in the area go down at least 200 feet). After putting in the pump and the permanent casing, enclosing the wellhead and attaching the pipes, the contractor totaled up his bill and presented it to Mr. Franklin. The exact amount was $74.99. They had one penny left over!
But that's not the end of the story. The well they dug in 1936 is still there and still pumping water. But that’s not the most amazing fact. In 70 years the well has never run dry. Never. Not even for a moment. "It's like there's an ocean of water under there," the camp director told me. Several years ago when a severe drought hit the region, most of the local wells went dry, but not the one at Camp Nathanael. They had so much water that they let the local people come and fill their water barrels.
The well is still pumping water, and it shows no signs of running dry. Is that a miracle? Yes, but behind the miracle well stands a miracle-working God who can speak a word and an ocean of water comes gushing up through the ground. He is truly the source of all things.
2. He is the Sustainer of All Things
“And through him.” (36b). Not only do all things flow from Him, but he is the reason for the continued existence of the universe. He alone understands the purpose for everything that he created. One of my favorite stories involves George Washington Carver, the man who discovered 255 different things you could do with the lowly peanut. Dr. Carver is revered for his years of work at the Tuskegee Institute in my home state of Alabama. Because of him, the South began to move away from a cotton-based economy to one based on other crops. George Washington Carver was a devout Christian who had a deep knowledge of God. When he was asked where he came up with so many uses for the peanut, he told this story. He said that when he was a young man, he went for a walk in the fields and while he was there, he and the Lord had a conversation. When he asked the Lord to show him why he had created the universe, the Lord said, “Son, that’s much too big for you. Ask me for something you can understand.” So he tried again. “Lord, show me why you created the world.” “Still too big for you. Try again.” George Washington Carver dropped his eyes to the ground and happened to see some peanuts on the vine. “Lord, could you tell me why you created the peanut?” “That’s a good question. Now we’ve found something you can understand.” The Lord showed Dr. Carver the secrets of the peanut, and he used what God showed him to change the world.
All things come “through him.” All knowledge, all wisdom, everything we have comes “through him.” He is the Sustainer of All Things -- even the peanut!
3. He is the Supreme Purpose of All Things
"And to him are all things” (36c). This is a breathtaking statement because Paul includes “all things” in his exclamation. Nothing is left out, no part of creation excluded. God is the beginning, the middle, and the end of “all things.” Everything comes from him, everything continues by him, everything finds it ultimate purpose in him. Life is like a giant jigsaw puzzle, and we are like children trying to put the puzzle together with only a handful of pieces and someone took the box that has the picture on the cover. So we’re left trying to fit our little handful of pieces together and trying to figure out the big picture at the same time. No wonder we struggle to figure out what life is all about. As the years pass we pick up more pieces to the puzzle and things that once troubled us now seem to fit into place. And we have a new appreciation for the wisdom of God because nothing is ever wasted. Everything “fits” somewhere.
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