No matter how many times it happens, it always amazes me how God orchestrates things in our lives. Several weeks ago we started a sermon series in Malachi and since then we have been walking through this book. I missed last Sunday because we were in Akron, and when I sat down this week to finish preparing, God let his glory show once again as I read this week’s passage. I couldn’t make past one verse.
In Malachi 2:17, a new section starts and as in other cases, it begins with a question and answer. God tells the people that they have wearied him by their thoughts and this verse concludes with the question that had plagued the Israelites, “Where is the God of justice?” They were God’s chosen people. If this really was the case, why had they been conquered by empires and through the generations from Solomon to present been suppressed and oppressed by their rulers. It seemed like God was on the side of the heathens, not his chosen people. Now there were many things in the history of Israel that led to their situation in Malachi, but there question is legitimate and is in the hearts of many today.
When we began to learn of all the problems Levi may have and were warned of the many complications that could accompany his birth, I was asked several times, why. They thought that because I was a pastor, God wouldn’t let anything like this happen. In their minds, these types of things only happen to people who defy God, not those that try to follow him. I was even asked by one person that isn’t a Christian, where was God in all of this? Did this situation not make me doubt? I want to share from my heart.
I praise God for what he has done in our family and how he has worked miracles in Levi’s life, but long before we had kids, Amy and I surrendered our lives to be used by God however he desired. Where was God in this situation? Everywhere! Why was he allowing this to happen? For his glory and purpose. Over the past weeks we have been able to share Christ with many people. And the way God has worked within us has poured out into the lives of others. We were able to meet, share, and pray for people that we would have never met otherwise; thousands of people were united in prayer over the life of one little boy; time and time again God showed his provision; he challenged us to pray more; he challenged others to pray more; he granted peace beyond what the world can explain; we were brought to our knees and raise with hope; he was there the whole time!
I am not sure what is happening in your life and the circumstances you are facing. I don’t know what lies in your past or the deep wounds that haven’t been healed, but I know that God that loves you and cares for you, working all things out in the end. As we have been studying through Malachi, it is easy to forget the beginning of the book. Malachi 1:2, ” ‘I have loved you,’ says the Lord.” How has he loved you? John 3:16. He loved you that much and no greater love has ever been shown, John 15:13. As a believer, the Lord is our shepherd, what more could we want? He is there when it hurts. He is there when it seems like everything is going wrong. He is there when the hope of the world has failed. He is there in pain and he is there in sorrow. He is there with comfort and he is there with open arms. He is there with love; never let Satan convince you otherwise. The joy of the morning always trumps the darkness of night.
Join us next Sunday as we look at the hope that is to come.