23.1.16, Luke 23:46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.’ When he had said this, he breathed his last.
It feels like it all happens so fast. In a matter of a chapter Jesus goes from being arrested and on trial to being dead and buried. It feels too quick, and for the disciples at the time it must have felt like an absolute whirlwind. One minute they are on the Mount of Olives with Jesus, then suddenly he is betrayed, arrested, tortured, put through a half-hearted trial, hung up on a cross and a few hours later he is dead. Their heads would have been spinning and their hearts crushed. Yet somehow, even though they don’t know it, this was the plan all along and God was always in control. Just before his arrest, Jesus prayed that God’s will should be done because he knew the fate of the world depended on it. What would have seemed like chaos and disaster to the disciples was actually the perfect will of God working its way out.
Life often seems chaotic and out of control. There are always new challenges to face and obstacles to overcome. Sometimes it can seem like we are cruising along ok, just hanging out and enjoying life, when suddenly something goes wrong and it feels like our whole world falls apart. In these times it is easy to ask where God is and question whether He is still with us, or to think that maybe we have done something drastically wrong and are suffering the consequences. But often through these challenges we find the most growth. God never promised us life would be easy, but He does promise us that he will work through everything we face for our good (Romans 8:28). He also promises us that nothing can separate us from Him or His love (Romans 8:38-39).
So how can we apply this to our lives? When things get tough, we need to try to always remember that God is in control. Jeremiah 29:11 tells us that God has good plans for us. It doesn’t always mean those plans will be easy or that we’ll always understand what’s going on, but it does say that those plans will give us “hope and a future”. I know that at times I struggle to understand what God is doing, or why things aren’t working out. Sometimes I want the genie God who just fixes things and grants wishes rather than the gardener God who prunes me and grows me so that I can mature and produce fruit. In these times we need to ask God to help us to wait on Him and trust Him even when things don’t make sense to us, because we know they make sense to Him.