I am forever telling God how I think situations in my life and in the lives of those I love should turn out. As if I think He requires my input. As if I think I know better. The sad, but true part of this is, that most of the time I do think I know better… or at least as good. Silly me.
A few weeks ago, while talking about change, I mentioned that my dad had suffered a small stroke. (It’s only small if it is not happening to you.) For my dad, it was a major change in his life. For the whole first week we saw no improvement in his deficits. None. Zero. I became so concerned over this that I pestered his Neurologist enough that the man, himself, finally called me back. I’m sure his nurse told him that if he didn’t call me back she was going to have to do something drastic.
He was kind, patient even. He went so far as to lie and tell me that he didn’t mind all my phone calls, but that no, he would not be admitting my dad to the hospital. He just didn’t think that would be necessary. I pleaded my case, but in the end, the only way my dad would be admitted to the hospital was if he got worse. Ouch.
All along I had been praying for my dad. Everyone I could enlist had been praying, too. I had asked for God to restore my dad to his prior level of functioning. I told God that seventy-four was just too young for my dad to hang it all up and take to the rocking chair. I told God that quite often I still needed my dad for real things. (Somehow it always comes back to me, doesn’t it?)
A couple of days after my conversation with my dad’s doctor, things began to happen. All of a sudden my dad could tie his shoes again. Then he could write his name and button his shirt. Slowly, things began to work again that had not worked in a few weeks. Just a few days ago, my dad started driving again. God help us.
All that is just fantastic. Really it is. But there is more. My dad is happy. I mean really happy. Euphoric even. He’s not grumpy, short tempered or crabby. Ever. He’s helpful, considerate, kind and… happy! Not that he was an old crab before, but he had his days, just like us all. Except that now he doesn’t. Every day is a good day for my dad. Together, my parents are like a young couple just starting out.
And then it occurred to me. God had not only restored my dad to his previous level of health, he had made him better.
Then a verse from Ephesians Chapter 3 came to mind:
“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,”
We tell God what we want him to do for us. But how limiting is that? When He is able to IMMEASURABLY more!
And then I backed up and read these verses from that same chapter:
“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”
So there is was. My father, who is rooted and established in love, now has the power to grasp how much the Father loves him. God saw fit to not only restore my father to health, but to make him better than before. I can’t understand it, its logic surpasses my knowledge. But I don’t care. It’s wonderful. So maybe I’m ready to stop telling God how He should work all these things out. Maybe it’s time I just stop all the worry and fretting. Maybe you should, too.
There are some really hard things you are dealing with. Some things those you love are going through break your heart. You know what would make all those things better. You’ve told them, and you’ve told God, too. If only they would just listen. How about we just take those things to God and then trust him with the outcome? How about that? Then let’s just sit back and watch him do immeasurably more than we can even imagine.