How are you? Hope you had or are having a good day today?
I heard many servants of the Lord say His words reveal something new every time they are read. This morning, I had the very fresh revelation from the Lord in reading the book of Jonah. Reading through the book, He highlighted the word “prepared” that appeared four times in New King James version. In chapter one, the Lord prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah, but we know it actually could save him in the sea for three days and three nights. In chapter four, He prepared a plant as shade for Jonah. Then He also prepared a worm to damage the plant till it withered, and prepared a vehement east wind, which made Jonah grew faint, together with the heat from the sun.
I thought to myself that the Lord prepared seemingly good things such as the big fish and the plant to save Jonah from the sea and from the heat. But the last two things He prepared were seemingly bad. Yet, through both the good and the bad things outwardly, He eventually let Jonah understand what is in His heart. He had pity toward those who were perishing, not knowing right from wrong. And He is so merciful and slow to anger that He wanted to save even the wicked who Jonah thought were due to be condemned.
And I thought of the Lord who prepares. He prepared a lot for you and me throughout our lives. I once wished there would be no such things as the worm or the vehement wind in my life, but I got to realize it would be impossible. Though they seem to be unpleasant, our Father prepared them for us. He wants us to know His heart and His will. He wants to teach us. And He wants us to be refined as silver.
In the book, “The Hiding Place”, Corrie ten Boom’s real story, Corrie and her elder sister, Betsie were moved to the notorious camp in Germany from the one in their home country, Holland. By God’s Providence, they could bring a Bible to their room without being inspected. In the room, they were packed and crammed with women prisoners from many countries. There, Betsie and Corrie held worship services with the Bible they brought in secret. One day, Betsie said thanks to the Lord for the fleas in their room, and Corrie couldn’t agree with her thanks for the fleas. Many days later, Betsie realized that the fleas indeed were the Lord’s provision. She could realize that the guards or the prison supervisors never entered their room, because of the fleas, so that they could continue to hold worship services with the Bible. What an amazing preparation from the Lord!
I heard someone say, “Why did good God allow this to happen to me?” Imagine that you are a mother of little kids, and all they want to eat is donuts and chocolates. You might want to give them to your kids once in a while, but you wouldn’t allow them to eat them every day. You would take care of their health so that you would give them fruits or dried fruits instead of donuts and chocolates. In addition, you would make sure you cook recipes that are balanced in nutrients. Your kids would not like to have vegetables or proteins, but you would give them as you know they are needed for their growth and health.
After going through fierce spiritual warfare, and now encountering day-to-day demands and sometimes challenging jobs, I found my Father also prepared these for me. Sometimes I would not understand why He prepared such a thing, but later I found out His ways and thoughts are higher than mine. I think He ultimately wants to mold me as pure gold, by learning love, patience, kindness, hope, and so forth.
Did you ever complain of the worm or the wind or the fleas in your life that our Father prepared? I hope you could understand His heart, though they seem unpleasant for now. Easier said than done. But I trust He is always faithful, and He has a better plan for all of us than we ever realize.
Have a bliss!
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. (James 1:2~4)