“But to this day the Lord has not given you a mind to understand, or eyes to see, or ears to hear.”
— DEUTERONOMY 29:4 (NRSV)
WE CANNOT always predict the trials that are impending. Those difficulties that are inbound, we cannot always see; not until sometimes they are right there in front of us. Many times it’s not until we are blindsided that we determine the trouble we are in. This is certainly the case when life situations and circumstances tend their way virulently against us, causing mental dissonance, emotional flurry, and spiritual chaos.
We need faith for the trials impending.
Abundance and Famine Come to Us All
We need to build our stores, now, as Joseph did during the seven years of abundance (Genesis 41:53-54), because the seven years of famine is coming.
Perhaps you are in the seven years of famine. Maybe you are thankful to God that you sought him wisely during the years of abundance – you stewarded away a good portion of life-sustaining faith for such a time as this. Maybe you did that because of an earlier experience where you didn’t – once bitten, twice shy!
Or, perhaps it’s the case that you are windswept and barren; in the harshest of those dry land winters of meaningless spirituality. God is long gone in your view, so is his favour. What price you would pay for faith right now! Yet, here is a smashing irony... God may have placed you in such a place, and allowed you to remain there, for stowage of faith, and the redemption of his strength.
Our human instinct is to store up something for a rainy day – and not just money.
We are rewarded when we store up humility, the awareness of blessing, and praise, for the days of darkness looming on the horizon. It is a wise thing to back off on our consumption, simply to experience the inflow of God’s revelation – what has happened to our neighbour may certainly come to us.
Even though we have no mind, eye, or ear for the trials that are to beset us, we do have God’s availing Presence – through faith to draw near – and that will get us through.
Abundance and famine come to us all. During the abundance, we are wise to store up faith and strength for ourselves – for the famine that is coming. This is not being morbid, just realistic and wise. We do not store up for ourselves wealth, for that melts away. We store up for ourselves the knowledge of God and the awareness of his goodness that always sustains us.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.