The other night our family was on the back porch on a lovely evening. We were talking about something. I can’t even remember what it was. But our whole family was surprised about a decision someone had made or something someone had said when out of the darkness we heard a small voice say, “God isn’t surprised.” Some of the wisest statements come from 12 year olds sometimes.
God isn’t surprised. So simple and yet so profound. God knows everything you and I will think–do–speak–accomplish–or not accomplish while we live on this earth. He knows when we will leave this earth. He knows absolutely everything about us and about everyone else. So nothing surprises Him.
The cancer is not a surprise. The car accident is not a surprise. The betrayal of a friend is not a surprise. The lost job is not a surprise. The tornado, the tsunami, and the flood–none of these surprise God.
I know we all “know” this. But have you ever thought about what this means? It means that God is in control. God is Sovereign. And if we believe what the Bible says–that God loves us–then we can rest in His will for our lives. It will not always be pleasant. It will not always be easy. But we can trust Him. We have to trust Him. What else is there? What else is there for us to grab hold of?
We have a choice to make every day. We can respond to the trials of life, be them great or small, by trusting our Heavenly Father or we can grow bitter and angry. It is a choice. God will not force you into His will.
I would like to leave you with something that was written by Octavius Winslow from a book entitled Soul Heights and Soul Depths (1841)–
The royal path to glory is a divine mosaic paved with stones of diverse lines. Today, it is a depth almost soundless; tomorrow a height almost scaleless. Now, a shadow drapes the picture, somber and rayless; then, a light illumines the camera, brilliant and gladsome. Here, the “song” is of mercy, sweet and entrancing; there, it is of judgment, sad and mournful. “When men are cast down, then you shall say There is lifting up.” But, a divine Hand, veiled and invisible to all but faith’s eye, shapes and directs the whole; and, assured of this, the believing soul is trustful and calm. “He led them about, He instructed them,” was the history of the Church in the wilderness; and each stage was a school, each condition a blessing, each event a lesson learned, and a new beatitude experienced, –learned and experienced as no other. Variety, rich and endless, is stamped upon all God’s works and operations; not less is this seen in the circuitous path by which He is leading His people home to Himself. It is this ever-dissolving, ever shifting scenery of the Christian’s life that unfold new views of God’s character, and brings him into a closer acquaintance with His own.