DayBreaks for 6/23/16 – How Ships Float and Faith
From the DayBreaks archive, June 2006:
I recently spent some time talking and praying with a fellow pastor whose wife has been diagnosed with cancer. They still haven’t settled on what the course of her treatment will be, and everyone is remaining hopeful that God will work a healing in her life, one way or the other.
As I sat talking with my friend, we got around to pondering the imponderables of life. Although we are both people of faith, as is his wife, the questions still come about what purpose God has in this and why such things happen. Sure, we both know the theological arguments for it, but when something hits that close to home, you do rethink things.
He shared with me an illustration that he’d read just recently about Romans 8:28 – you know, the verse we’re so fond of quoting about how “All things work together for good for those who love the Lord…”. Here’s the illustration: if you were to take any of the individual parts of a huge ocean liner and throw them into the water, they would sink like the proverbial stone. They just can’t float by themselves. But when all the parts are organized and put into the right place and attached together in one finished product, the entire ship floats perfectly. It is much more successful at floating than just the sum of its parts or than any one of its parts. Why? The key is in the verse from Romans 8:28: All things work TOGETHER…for good…” Do you see? Individually, any one part may not work at all, we would look at it and say “That can’t float!” But somehow, when it works together with the rest of the parts, they ALL float magnificently.
And so it is with the things that happen to us in life. I can’t explain how it works. I can’t tell my friend why God has brought this trial into their life – but I can say that somehow, God takes all the individual pieces of our lives that would sink like a rock, puts them together in an intricate weaving of life, and he sees to it that in the end, it all WORKS TOGETHER for the best.
As you look at individual happenings in your life (like the striking of cancer, heart disease, losing a job, etc.) they look like nothing less than an unmitigated disaster of cosmic proportions. But God sees all those things put together, working together, to make us something special that DOES work. So, when you look at something that happens in your life that appears disastrous, remember that God is still working to fit it into the overall design that He has in mind for you, and that His design will do more than float…it will fly!
PRAYER: Lord, Your ways are so far beyond our understanding that we can only bow before you, knees knocking, and do our best to trust and believe that somehow, in a way that none of us can begin to fathom, You’re putting our life together perfectly. May we rest in this certainty as we face the challenges and disappointments of life today and always. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.