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His ways are so unpredictable.
So “past finding out.”
Yet, somehow, because He is the all-powerful, loving, holy God that His Word says He is, His ways are always right.
This God—his way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him. ~ Psalm 18:30
We cringe at that thought, sometimes, don’t we? Often these ways feel too painful, mysterious, and hard. Some of His “perfect ways” involve leaving us in the dark. He’s at work, yet chooses not to reveal His plans to us.
Maybe you’re there? Needing reassurance that He’s still working and it won’t be like this forever?
I’ve been there too. I spent years without answers but can also testify to God’s faithfulness when I just couldn’t see or understand.
God knew from the beginning, how He would answer almost a decade of prayers for my children’s adoptions to be completed, yet He allowed my husband and me to wait, toil, and wonder in the dark.
At one point, we were forced to evacuate our home in the country of Haiti for a month during a political coup, unable—due to government corruption— to bring our three young Haitian children along. And for much of the time, I agonized. I questioned God, vacillating between faith and fear…
My head knew we’d done what we had to do, and God was in it. But even so, when I turned the facts over in the darkness of the Dominican Kids Alive guest house, they haunted me. This was real. We’d actually left our kids behind. This was not the stuff missionary biographies were supposed to include. The stories I’d read extolled the courage of those refusing to abandon the war-torn countries in which they served. Like captains who go down with their ship, missionaries—not to mention mothers—were supposed to risk everything for those they loved. Panic crowded out the peace I’d rested in only hours before. What was I doing here? Why should I be safe in these cool Dominican mountains when the ones dearest to me were at risk across the border?
The choice had not been mine to make, but had I fought hard enough?
I squeezed my eyes tight and blew out a conflicted sigh, careful not to wake Jarod. Jesus, really? Is this what you want?
—from In a Sun-Scorched Land
It was a long season of faith. The kind that saw very little evidence that my prayers would ever be answered.
And honestly, sometimes that’s how God works. But He is still working! Just because we don’t see it, doesn’t mean He’s ignoring us.
God worked so dramatically in our lives during those eight years of ministry, it took an entire book to detail the stranger-than-fiction story. He knew what He was doing, and now on the other side of it all, I finally understand some of it and long to give Him glory for His “perfect ways.”
God Is At Work
God has now brought us into a new season. A season full of individuals, sermons, circumstances, Scriptures, and songs pointing my family toward a fresh ministry. Every one of us has experienced moments of awe as we’ve seen God communicate His will to us.
And it’s funny… We’ve experienced so much of God’s hidden, mysterious ways, that we find ourselves floored—almost unnerved—by such personal clarity.
In these moments, the challenge is to be obedient. We can’t hem and haw in the ambiguous fog. We see His guiding hand, and we’re asked to follow Him. It’s a new kind of challenge. And this too takes faith!
I don’t which season you’re in today.
If you find yourself in a dark season, I want to assure you that it’s just a season. It’s a chapter (or yes, maybe several chapters!) of your story. It hurts, I know. And that’s why our God offers to be our shield and our refuge. Run to Him for your security.
There will also be the moments, the days, the seasons when God’s presence, His guidance, and His methods will be clearer. And you’ll be asked to take steps—even leaps—of faith. Seasons where God points you in a surprising new direction and you’ll be asked to obey, even though it might not be easy.
Wherever you are, however, God is working, know this…
He knows what He’s doing, whether we see it or not.
We can trust Him.
Because His way is perfect.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: This newly-released memoir, In a Sun-Scorched Land: A memoir of adoption, faith, and the moving of Haiti’s mountains by Jennifer Ebenhack, Foreword by Lisa Jacobson.
★★★★★“This was a book I couldn’t put down. I’m afraid the laundry went undone for a few days until I could finish it! Jennifer’s story shows that life is hard, but God is at work behind all of the seeming setbacks. He protects. He makes a path for us, even if it’s a crazy, almost untraceable one. He gives strength when we don’t have any left. When I put Jennifer’s book down, I felt encouraged to persevere through my own hard days. An excellent read that I highly recommend.” ~ Amazon Review