Here are some little pieces of encouragement from Paul Tripp’s New Morning Mercies. Lord knows my life has contained some confusing things, and I could torment myself for eternity with “what-ifs” and “if-onlys”, and I have tried till I wore out to explain other things, to no avail, so these were good reminders.
You see, there is no mystery with God. He is never caught off guard. He never wonders how he is gong to deal with the unexpected thing. I love the words of Daniel 2:22: “He knows what is in the darkness, and light dwells with him.”
God is with you in your moments of darkness because he will never leave you. But your darkness isn’t dark to him. Your mysteries aren’t mysterious to him. Your surprises don’t surprise him. He understands all the things that confuse you the most. Not only are your mysteries not mysterious to him, but he is in complete charge of all that is mysterious to you and me.
Remember today that there is One who looks at what you see as dark and sees light. And as you remember that, remember, too, that he is the ultimate definition of everything that is wise, good, true, loving, and faithful. He holds both you and your mysteries in his gracious hands, and because he does, you can find rest even when the darkness of mystery has entered your door.
Even though you’re a person of faith who has acquired some degree of biblical literacy and theological knowledge, there’s one thing you can be sure of – God will confuse you. Your theology will give you only a limited ability to exegete your experiences. The commands, principles, and case studies of Scripture will take you only so far in your quest to figure out your life. There will be moments when you simply don’t understand what is going on. In fact, you will face moments when what the God has declared himself to be good brings into your life won’t seem good. It may even seem bad, very bad.
Now, if your faith is based on your ability to fully understand your past, present, and future, then your moments of confusion will become moments of weakening faith. But the reality is that you are not left with only two options – understand everything and rest in peace or understand little and be tormented by anxiety. There is a third way. It really is the way of true biblical faith. The Bible tells you that real peace is found in resting in the wisdom of the One who holds all of your “what-ifs” and “if-onlys” in his loving hands. Isaiah captures this well with these comforting words: “You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you” (Isaiah 26:3) …