Maybe you’ve been around for some time, or maybe you are new here, either way, it might not come as a surprise that my sister, Priscilla Shirer, knows a thing or two about rightly handling God’s Word. If there is anyone I can trust to communicate the truth of God’s Word in a way that personally connects with anyone who listens, it would be her. I hope you are ready. This is going to be good!
EVEN THAT THING
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
– Philippians 4:6
God’s activity is not confined to the spectacular and jaw-dropping. He does a plethora of things that never make headlines or invite peals of applause. Some of His work—dare I say, some of His best work—is performed on the most ordinary days, in the most ordinary places and ways, with ordinary people. Like us.
The tendency of humanity is to put God into our self-established theological box into which we hope He will comfortably fit, a box that doesn’t allow for the supernatural and amazing—because that is too big. But sometimes the box we’ve chosen doesn’t make room for Him to work in the routine and ordinary. That is too small.
Yet a God box is still a God box, no matter where you position it in your faith. Limiting our view of Him to the stupendous is not really any different from limiting our view of Him to the monotonous. He doesn’t exist only in the stratosphere of extravagant need. His ability comes all the way down to the ground, to the places we live on regular weekdays while working, playing, eating, and engaging in ordinary realities.
By no means does this understanding minimize Him to a trivial fraction of who He is. It actually magnifies the detailed and caring nature of His character. The same God who divided the Red Sea is the same God who knows about the loss of a solitary, fallen sparrow and takes the time to number the hairs on our heads (Matthew 10:29-30). He knows when His children are in grave agony, just as He knows and cares when it has simply been one of those really long mornings. Nothing escapes His attention. Nothing is too small to avoid His notice. He cares about it all.
In highlighting His attention to routine detail, the Scripture counteracts a lie we find so easy to believe—that God may have been loving enough to send His Son to die for us, taking care of our biggest thing, but He’s not much interested in taking care of our little things, our daily things, our too-small-to-mention things. Yet “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32).
There’s a comprehensiveness to God’s ability that covers all that concerns us. “[He] pardons all your iniquities; [He] heals all your diseases” (Psalm 103:3). He invites “all who are weary and heavy-laden” to come experience His rest (Matthew 11:28). He says His lovingkindness “will follow me all the days of my life” (Psalm 23:6), and that if we seek His kingdom above every other desire, “all these things” will be given (Matthew 6:33)—full provision, food and clothing, love and shelter, every need.
He who is saving you from hell is also willing and able to save what’s left of your nerves and your workweek. Because even in the fine print of Scripture, we can trace the detailed care and concern of our God for everything we face.
Even that thing.
The mundane thing.
The ordinary thing.
The small thing.
The Lord will accomplish what concerns me; Your lovingkindness, O Lord, is everlasting. Psalm 138:8
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