Growing In Faith
"You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed." (Psalm 139:16, NLT)
Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith. We just have to trust Him with the pen and the paper.
God wants to write our story. But so often we grab the pen out of the hand of the author and want to hurry through our story, using shorthand, abbreviations, and sometimes we want to delete some things altogether. But God doesn't want to hurry when writing our story. He uses elaborate handwriting, putting great detail, time, and love with every stroke of His pen.
Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT) says, “’For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’”
We can take comfort in knowing God’s plans and story for our lives cannot be stopped. God doesn't make mistakes when writing our story. He doesn't need an eraser, white out, or need to hit the backspace button. God has no accidents (He knows exactly what He is doing). God is never surprised or thrown off guard. He knows exactly what He is doing in our lives.
God is the most accomplished author ever and He wants to write your story. If you will trust Him enough to do that, you will not only honor Him but you will be pleased with how the story ends.
You may say that you just want to read the end of the book already, and avoid all of the in-between chapters that seem so long. It’s as if, like Eve, I believe the enemy’s lie that God is withholding something from me that I “need.” I need to know. I need just one bite. I need just one peek at the last few pages of the story.....or I "need" to take the pen and write it myself.
That’s not how it works, we do not need to know everything we think we need to know. There is a purpose to every chapter of our lives, and we need to trust God that He knows exactly what He's doing.
Thankfully I am not the author of my own personal story. Your story isn’t an autobiography either. Your story is a biography of wisdom and grace written by God Himself. Every turn He writes into your story is right. Every twist of the plot is for the best. Every new character or unexpected event is a tool of His grace. Each new chapter advances His purpose, even though it may not feel like it at the moment.
By God’s grace, I am learning that in these in-between chapters, character development takes place. He’s teaching me trust, patience, and how to wait on Him through the unknown. Just like with fictional characters, unexpected twists and turns and trials come into our lives, many of them being entirely out of our control. But the author always knows how the story is going to end before the characters do.
When we fix our eyes on Jesus, we can remember that He is the author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2), and will lead us to a beautiful destination — a destination that will bring Him glory. We don't have to anxiously distrust Him and fear what is written in our chapters ahead. We can rely on His faithfulness as a Shepherd to guide us to the end. We can depend on him, because I know that “for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28, NLT).
So, it’s wise to leave our storyline to the best Storyteller of all. Nowadays, however, we’re told to reinvent our stories; to rewrite the drama of our own lives. Our culture is constantly telling us through movies, books, and music that we are the captains of our own souls, without need of the One who created us. That couldn't be further from the truth. We need God to write our story, He ultimately knows what's best for us....after all, He created each of us!
If God seems to be writing an unusual story in your life, don’t resist his penmanship on the pages of your days. Don’t complain against the bumps and bruises He writes into your script. I admit that His story can, at times, read like a mystery novel, but in the end, His story line for those who trust Him is always wise, specific, and good. Good for you and for others. Best of all, good for the Kingdom.
As my story continues, I want to testify through to the very last chapter that, even though impatience tried its best to take a hand at writing my story, all of the in-between chapters of waiting developed me and deepened my love and reliance for God, my Author.
Put down the pen and let God do the writing!