Dan, Heather, Jeremiah, Emma, Claire, Levi, Josie and baby Jane

Monday, November 3, 2008

A Practicum on Romans 8:28

Two weeks down and one week to go here at MTI. Levi’s “flu” slowly worked its evil way through our family, striking Heather on Monday night. That same night, my Dell laptop computer screen died, cut short in its prime after only two years of faithful service. I could barely see the Windows logo through the black screen. The following night, determined to solve this very unfortunate problem, I called the dreaded Dell “support line.” After two hours on the phone with “Michael,” a very nice young man from somewhere in India, straining to understand his instructions for trouble-shooting my system, we finally decided what I astutely knew all along: my LCD screen was broken.

The following day, Emma and I fell prey to the flu. I don’t recall being that sick since getting food poisoning after eating a bad shrimp dish on our 5th wedding anniversary. While laying in bed, struggling to understand God’s purposes in all this, I was reminded of Romans 8:28: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.” If we truly believe that God is sovereign, then do we believe that whatever happens, whether good or bad, has a purpose? At times, the purpose may be clear; more often than not, it is veiled from our understanding, left to the hidden things of God. What if our family getting sick now is a blessing? Wouldn’t it be better here at MTI than the week before we leave for Kenya (or worse yet, while on the journey over)? And would I rather of had my computer troubles start shortly after arriving in Kenya?

Thankfully, two years ago when I bought the laptop, I also purchased the in-home warranty, and Michael made arrangements for a local Dell technician to come here to MTI to replace my screen. Two days later, I was greeted by a man who introduced himself as “my private geek,” and in a few short hours, my computer was running perfectly again, tuned and ready to go for Kenya. And the flu? The plague ran its course, cut short after Heather declared war and unleashed an entire industrial size can of Lysol on our rooms.

Tougher times are most likely on the horizon for all of us. But God never promised to shield us from trials, even trivial ones like ours. In fact, they are his instruments for our discipline, character and maturity, creating in us a hope, a longing for things eternal rather than things temporal. Although painful, can we rest in his sovereignty and his promises?

And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered for a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.
1 Pet. 5:10.

1 comment:

Dan + Mae said...

oh yeah! so glad we can keep up with y'all through your blog :)

daniel & magen