|Father's Day on Cannery Row.|
When I went into the coffee shop to order while we waited for my folks to arrive I noticed on the top of the counter facing the door a few books on stands . . . a couple of titles by John Steinbeck, and my dad's pictorial history of the Monterey/Cannery Row waterfront and sardine industry, From Fisherman's Wharf to Steinbeck's Cannery Row. When he got there I had fun telling my dad that he was ranked up there side by side with Steinbeck!
|Not bad company to be next to . . .|
As I reflected on that, I found myself thinking of how often we probably ask God for an answer to something and, while He knows it, He either can't give it to us, or we can't recognize it as from Him when He does (thinking, instead, we are just having weird thoughts or daydreams), because the answer is completely out of our frame of current reference because it involves situations and circumstances that we have yet to even know will happen. Sometimes, I believe, we must wait to get an answer from God because a person, or situation, or event involved in the answer is not even in place or in the picture yet, and there is no way for us to comprehend an answer that involves something or someone we are not even aware of yet.
As I look back at seasons of my life I realize how many places there are in it that if you had told me where I'd be five or ten or twenty years later I would have either laughed, called you crazy, or simply not been able to wrap myself around it (i.e. the college freshmen mocking a God he claims he doesn't believe in becoming a pastor, etc.). Certainly, if I had a thought about a future like that I would have dismissed it! And yet, when we pray and ask God a question about the future, how many times is that the same situation? We wouldn't recognize the answer if He gave it to us because it is so out of the current context of our life or situation. And so, in that period of waiting, we move ahead on faith—not believing God hasn't heard or doesn't care, but just trusting the love He showed us on the cross and knowing that, if we aren't seeming to get an answer from Him, we can trust His love and trust His character and goodness, and trust that there is a good reason for it—and that He has not left us, ceased to care for us, or stopped watching over us.