20170815

A Prayer for when you don’t understand your circumstances

by Dr. James MacDonald
“His disciples did not understand these things at first, but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written about him and had been done to him” 
(John 12:16, ESV).

We can all attest to the 20/20 nature of hindsight; that moment of looking back on a complicated, confusing situation and realizing exactly what we should have done or been aware of at the time.

But can we somehow turn this expectation into an advantage in the moment, as it’s playing out? Can we live in light of the reality that a time is coming when we’ll see God’s hand in all of this?

Have you ever been in a situation like that — where you didn’t understand what was happening? Where you couldn’t seem to feel anything but disappointment or confusion? Where you seemed to be more questions than answers?

Knowing why is not part of the skillset God expects from us as His followers. Answers to all the usual questions — Why is this happening? What on earth is God doing? — are not required, most likely not even available, during the heat of life’s most mystifying moments.

All you need to know in times like these is the confident assurance that afterward, when you look back, you will see His hand at work in it. And knowing you’ll see it from a distance means it’s already here in the present — perhaps not to be recognized immediately, but to be trusted implicitly.

Even when it’s difficult now, remember that one day you’ll see with clarity what God has been doing. And that it was always, only, for your good and His glory.

Prayer:
Lord God, I know You are here. I trust in Your presence, Your power, Your goodness, and Your complete control over everything I’m facing. Help me walk through the questions, assured of Your answers, even though they’re still unclear to me. I know one day King Jesus will appear as the “Faithful and True” (Revelation 19:11), riding a powerful horse and fully revealing His authority. And I know that even now, when I don’t understand all the answers, I have You with me, and that is all that matters. Please give me increasing eyes of faith to trust what You are doing, even — and especially — when I don’t understand. I love You and I trust You, and I pray these things in Jesus’ Worthy Name, Amen.