When I was studying these women for a class, I found myself amazed by God’s providence and bemused by his methods yet again. How many times have we said that God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts and his ways higher than our ways? His ways are not only different from ours, they often don’t make any sense to us.
To keep his prophet safe from Jezebel, he sent him into the heart of Jezebel’s home country. To house him he sent him to a poor woman. To feed him, he sent him to a starving widow. To encourage him, he sent him to a Gentile. Would we have even thought to do any of these things in these ways?
Yet God demands that we accept the same sorts of contradictory things every day. But many who are last shall be first, and the first last, Matt 19:30. For whoever would save his life shall lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake shall find it, Matt 16:25. The greatest among you shall be your servant, Matt 23:11.
In that lies the test of faith. It is not shown so much in great deeds of heroism as it is in accepting God’s way when it makes no sense. It is shown when we follow a path that no longer seems to lead anywhere. It is shown when, day after day, we live the principles his Son lived, not trusting in things of this world, but trusting that God’s way works no matter how it looks from our perspective. How else could Gideon have gone to battle against an army “without number” with only 300 weaponless men? How else could Mary have faced a skeptical village every day for the rest of her life when she had a healthy baby six months after marrying? How else could Mark’s mother have opened her home to praying Christians when everyone knew they were in danger? How else could Abraham have offered in sacrifice a son through whom God had made so many promises?
How do we face another trying day today? By realizing that God does not work like we do, but that his ways do work. By understanding that we might not actually see here on earth exactly how they work, but trusting that they will anyway. By knowing that his Spirit will give us the strength to continue, expecting God’s purposes to come to fruition, just as his promises always have. Day after day after sometimes difficult day.
God used a poor, starving, heathen woman, living in the middle of his enemies to save his prophet. Don’t doubt what he can do for you.
You are my witnesses, says Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that you may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, even I, am Jehovah; and besides me there is no savior. I have declared, and I have saved, and I have showed; and there was no strange god among you: therefore you are my witnesses, says Jehovah, and I am God. Yea, since the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work, and who can hinder it? Isa 43:10-13.