October 27, 2008
GRACE UNDER PRESSURE
by Charles R. Swindoll
We could go all the way through this list to the end. There are wrongs, there are failures, and there are injustices. There were robberies and sexual sins and hidden wrongs done in the dark. And where is God? He is permitting it. Why? "I don't know," says Job. "I think His point here is that these things are allowed for purposes unknown to us. God has permitted it all!" Those who do wrong often get away with it. Those who take advantage of others get away with that too. Unexplainable suffering falls into the same category.
You and I could mention events in our lifetime that the Lord could have stopped, but He didn't. This isn't just about the Jewish Holocaust. This isn't simply about the wrongs of the Crusade Era. This isn't only about the priests in the Roman Catholic Church who have molested young boys. This is also about all kinds of things that we could name, and God could have stopped each one---but He didn't. It's a mystery! That's the point. "I can't justify the permissions of God, but I trust Him."
Refuse to believe that life is based on blind fate or random chance. Everything that happens, including the things you cannot explain or justify, is being woven together like an enormous, beautiful piece of tapestry. From this earthly side it seems blurred and knotted, strange and twisted. But from heaven's perspective it forms an incredible picture. Best of all, it is for His greater glory. Right now, it seems so confusing, but someday the details will come together and make good sense.
There it is---part of God's perfect plan unfolding. You can't explain it. You couldn't piece it all together if you tried. You aren't able to understand it, and there will be times you won't like it. But, as we're learning from Job, God's not going to ask your permission. And so? We trust Him anyway. I'll write it once more: Those who do that discover without trying to make it happen that they have begun to demonstrate grace under pressure. To settle for less is a miserable existence.
Do you trust God anyway?
Reprinted by permission. Day by Day, Charles Swindoll, July 2005, Thomas Nelson, inc., Nashville, Tennessee. All rights reserved. Purchase "Day by Day" here.