If we could quantify the number of miracles God performs each day, we might realize this world is much more fragile than we thought. Every day, God is preserving our lives from more danger, threat, and heartache than we could ever perceive. He is our refuge and sustainer, sparing us even from the knowledge of threats.
Romans 4:17 says He is the One who “gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.” The potential of every miracle is at His fingertips. At creation, He turned the innovative ideas in His mind into reality through His speech. When He spoke, “Let there be light,” He made possible every future application of light.
He engineered systems in the universe, creating the moon to guide the seasons, the water cycle to replenish the earth, and seeds to germinate and feed humankind. He is a God of order. Yet also at creation, He made the possibility for things that would not be discovered for many years. Into the sky, He painted the possibility of a rainbow. He wrote the equation for the aurora borealis or northern lights in the galaxies. He set into motion the cycle of eclipses and every movement across the night sky, which would not be discovered for years to come. If God wrote all of this into existence to reveal it throughout time, what possibilities might He have waiting in our own experiences? What characteristics of Himself is He waiting to show us in His perfect timing? His character is unchanging, but as we spend time with Him, He is progressively revealing who He is and how He interacts with us.
In Romans 4:18, we read that after God promised Abraham he would be the father of a great nation, “In hope he believed against hope.” It’s a word puzzle, but it makes more sense when we trace it back to the Greek word for “hope.” This word can mean “expectation,” referring to both good and bad things. It alludes to an expectation of evil and fear or an expectation for good. God made a promise to Abraham that went against his logical thinking. He was elderly, and his wife wasn’t able to conceive. Yet, despite the apparent expectation of no children, Abraham chose to cling to God’s promise and expect its fulfillment. Despite his circumstances and what he expected from them, he clung to hope in God’s promise.
The same can be true when we look at God’s Word. His promises might not coincide with our present circumstances. Still, we can trust that His Word is good and timeless and that, as we abide in Him and live by His Word, it will become more and more a reality in our lives.
Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Abraham could not envision his wife pregnant, but he was assured of what he knew was true: God will not lie. It’s easy to doubt God’s Word when it doesn’t seem to align with our experiences. But perhaps, like the sky waiting on a rainbow or the galaxies revolving into an eclipse, God is carrying out His sovereign plan in perfect timing.
Consider a tree toppled over on the forest floor. Its crippled trunk lays rotting. Does it believe in hope against what it sees? Can it perceive that even the rot can lead to new life? Job 14:7-9 offers this visual:
“For there is hope for a tree,
if it be cut down, that it will sprout again,
and that its shoots will not cease.
Though its root grow old in the earth,
and its stump die in the soil,
yet at the scent of water it will bud
and put out branches like a young plant.”
Maybe starting over isn’t what this tree expected or would have chosen in life — but there is profound beauty on that forest floor and symbolism for our lives. When all seems lost, we can believe despite what we see. Redemption and new life might not always look like what we expect, but we can trust God’s plans and purposes and His unchanging Word. In John 20:29, Jesus said, “… Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” And yet we are not entirely blind. We are given sight through the Scriptures and God’s Spirit. He is actively granting clarity.
Think again about that tree on the forest floor, stretching new roots into the ground and daring to stretch branches toward the sky. Perhaps with time and enough sunlight and water, its disappointment will dissolve into a fresh perspective. Maybe another tree standing nearby, feeling weak and beginning to totter, will glimpse the fallen tree reaching for light and discover hope. Even in the hardest of circumstances, God is the bringer of new life.
In Romans 4:20, we read about Abraham, “No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God….”
May our circumstances not cause us to waver in our faith. Instead, may we grow more familiar with God’s Word, hiding His promises in our hearts, and believe those steadfast truths despite what we see. In perfect timing, He guides us to fresh perspectives and new life.