“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to [His] purpose,” Romans 8:28 NKJV
I was walking toward the front of my house this morning when this visitor caught me by surprise. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t doubt there are snakes around my house. They are pretty common here in Georgia. However, I don’t usually see one lying about so casually in the middle of the day all out in the open. Where is a hawk when you need one!
My oldest son came downstairs as I was going to get a can of hornet spray (crazy, I know) and try to kill it shoo it away. Cam wants to become a vet so his first response was “let me see it!” So we stepped outside the front door and sure enough the snake is still there. It had not moved. One inch.
As I’m clinging to the can of Raid, Cam looks at me and says, “You shouldn’t kill it. They eat rats. Don’t kill it just to kill it.”
I’m proud of him yet annoyed that of all the things I’ve taught him, he chooses to remember that one tidbit as I’m thinking to myself where is that shovel?
We look a bit closer and the snake apparently has just swallowed something.
This black racer or king snake or whatever it is reminded me that the things we often like the least in life serve a valuable purpose. Some of the very hardships we would choose to do without teach us the most. It is often the painful, ugly and difficult experiences that make us better people.
For some of us it takes an illness to find out how strong we really are. Disappointment teaches us humility. Compassion is often a byproduct of pain. God often allows the “ugly” people and circumstances in our lives to bring about a better outcome. We just have to look and think beyond what we see to how God can use it.
Some people now working in their “dream jobs” never would if they hadn’t first gotten fired elsewhere. Our enemies can often push us toward our Savior and His blessings when nothing else will do it! Sometimes the very things in life that seem to push us down actually propel us forward.
Then there are other times when a frustrating inconvenience later turns out to be life-saver. The flat tire you discover before work spares you from a fatal accident. Running late because of your kids keeps you out of harm’s way. The car that was sold out from under you later turns out to be a “lemon.”
We don’t always have to understand how or why? Trusting God is enough.
Sometimes the best route is not the most direct route. Our God knows what we need and when to get us where He wants us to go. His provision in Biblical times was often unconventional and miraculous. It is no less so, today.
So, if you are plagued with doubts or a situation looks hopeless, turn to God and trust Him. God can do the impossible!
He’s just going to do it His way.