BEST FOR THE LAST

wedding table.jpgThe ways of God and the values of His Kingdom are so diametrically opposite to the ways of men in this world in this age. They are extremely puzzling and incomprehensible to this world. They seem to be mindless and impractical, a true enigma to those who have achieved much with their mathematically precise calculations.

Take, for example, the matter of water-changed-into-wine in the wedding reception in Cana of Galilee. In itself the production of wine from water in the time interval between the pouring of it into the vessel and the pouring out a sample of it for the event manager who declares it as wine, is stupendous. Add to it that it was better than the first served one, by a person who is clueless as to its origin. Top it up with the fact that the best wine is normally served first and the inferior one later usually when guests are too intoxicated to discern the change. What do you have – a total unconventional happening that shatters human concepts and experience. You learn that God’s ways are very different from our carefully planned and well-executed machinations!

Consider another incident, that of 5 loaves and 2 fishes being stretched and multiplied to fit a crowd of not less than 15k people (men alone 5k, so assuming 1 woman per guy and adding 1 child per). Compare it with a similar one in another place and time wherein 7k people were fed with 7 loaves and few fishes. What do you have but a mathematic puzzle have of how a lesser number can feed a larger number and vice versa. It doesn’t add up and that’s the miraculous beauty of God’s ways and means – that He cannot be confined or limited. After all, if He created it all, including the natural laws, doesn’t it make sense that He can transcend them if He wants to!

Or let’s ponder the fact of the deep sea fishing incident. Jesus instructs veteran fishermen, experts in their field of work and arena of operation, the Sea of Galilee, to fish in broad daylight when they have had total loss in their prime workplace timing. No wonder that Peter fell to his knees and declared Jesus Lord of all when he garnered in the best catch of his life, a catch that needed help from colleagues and friends to haul all in. Wonder if these latter were standing around watching and waiting to ridicule Peter’s mistake in following the advice of an unqualified consultant and were astonished at the result!

As illustrated and explained in the Bible, that’s how God thinks and works His will, demonstrating the immense and immutable omnipotence of Who He is! He cannot be fathomed or analysed for He is infinite and we are finite beings in finite time setting in finite physical framework. He cannot be understood for He is outside time, inhabiting and in control of eternity past and eternity future. He cannot be seen or touched or felt for He is Spirit who has chosen to interact with concrete confined and limited beings and world. He can only be acknowledged, accepted and paid allegiance to, not by sight or feeling or thinking but by faith.

If God Himself is so, how much more different, unintelligible & indecipherable will His thoughts and ways be. As pointed out in the Bible, God thinks very differently from us and works very dis-similarly from the way we do. The only way to understand Him is to flow in His Spirit for as it says in I Cor 2: 10-16 “The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, for, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.

I have seen this happen over and over again in my life. When I think something is impossible based on circumstances or when my well-thought out planning fails. I find that He is not limited by my scant resources nor boxed in by expectations. All I can do is follow and flow in His Spirit, trusting His supreme love that works all things together only for my good.

Bottom line is: God is Sovereign and He will do all that He purposes to do at all times, while at the same time not trampling over the sovereignty of my freewill and the ensuing choices. God often works contrariwise to human intentions and human manipulations!

In the words of the coordinator of the wedding feast to the man of the hour, the bridegroom, in the first incident I mentioned above (John 2:1-10) “EVERYONE brings out the choice wine FIRST and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but YOU have saved the BEST till now.

*Written in time of discussion of the wedding preparations of a mentee!

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