I was in my car at an intersection, waiting for the light to change. Through the window of the car to my right, I saw a woman standing on the curb. It was the view of her upper body that caught my eye. She was grinning from ear to ear and highly animated, with hands pointing to the traffic light, while she talked and talked—to herself. Poor thing!
Then the light changed and the car next to me moved on, revealing the whole scene. A young boy was standing by the woman—indicating that she was a mom talking with her son, instead of a disturbed woman talking with phantoms. Her young son had been there all along, hidden from view.
My original assessment of this scene reminded me of the way in which we often misjudge people and situations based on our limited view. We notice a fellow employee in a lower position who is a hard worker and determine that he is contending for our job. We consider a bad report from the doctor and determine that it is the final verdict. We look at the mistakes of our past and determine that we are failures. If we are not careful, we end up living—and being ruled—by the judgments we make based on what meets the eye.
Consider Joseph of the Old Testament. He is an example of someone who could have been deceived by focusing on what met the eye. The pit his brothers threw him into after he revealed his prophetic dreams to them looked like the end of his dreams! (See Gen. 37.) Joseph could have considered himself defeated, but he kept the faith.
In Potiphar’s house, when things turned from bad to worse for him, Joseph continued to trust God—who took the pit and made it the very vehicle that moved Joseph in the direction of the palace, the fulfillment of his dreams (see Gen. 39-41).
Now think about your own life. Regardless of the way things look, God has a wonderful purpose for you. Where is the evidence? Since God is Spirit (see John 4:24), He often moves in ways we can’t see. That’s why we need faith—defined in Hebrews 11:1 as, “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” We get glimpses of God and the evidence of His work through our faith.
Today, I challenge you to join me in dwelling not on the evidence of your calling, but on the God of your calling—the God who is faithful (see 1 Thess. 5:24), the God who will make it happen, just as His Word promises (see Phil. 1:6), the same God who brought Joseph from the pit to the palace.
The God of your calling cares about what you see. He also cares about what you don’t always see—the evidence of things yet to come.
PRAYER POWER FOR THE WEEK OF 01/06/2014
This week thank the Lord for His faithfulness in leading you to fulfill His plan for your life. Pray that those persecuted for the sake of Christ would stand firm, and that God would develop an army of prayer warriors and youth to carry on His worldwide purpose. Continue to pray that our President and those working with him would recognize their need for God and seek Him for guidance when making decisions affecting our nation and the world. Pray for those embattled by horrific winter weather, job losses, crime, broken relationships and health issues. Ask the Lord to show you what you can do to be a blessing this year. Lift up Israel as well as our military, their families, and our national, civic and spiritual leaders. Heb. 11:1-16.