And for this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received from us the word of God’s message, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe. (1 Thessalonians 2:13)
When I left my husband a little over two years ago, and my children and I moved to the town we now live in, my oldest daughter seemed as far away from God as she had ever been. She was 15, and no matter what I said or did, it seemed that she had put a wall between herself and her Creator, and she did not want to breach it. The next nearly 2 years were the hardest years I’ve ever had with her. Let me just say that she was a teenager times 5. She was a tornado on her own path, and heaven help anyone who got in her way. I felt pretty battered emotionally.
But I continued to pray for her, and to try to get the word of God into her life. I saw small glimmerings…one day she told me that she was getting up in the mornings and texting a Bible verse to a younger girl she had met at our former church. She was mentoring her long distance.
Still, my daughter’s behavior belied the scripture she was looking up and sending to the girl.
Since July, she’s been across the country at college, and we continue to struggle in our relationship. Many of our phone calls end up in arguments. She’s still a teenager, and turning 18 soon. I’m trying to tell her what an awesome opportunity she has, but she doesn’t like her college. She doesn’t like being so far from home. And she doesn’t like her very limited and stringent life at a military academy–even though it was her choice and God’s providence that put her there.
But just about a week ago, I checked her Facebook page, and saw that she had put up a scripture on it:
Don’t be wishing you were someplace else or with someone else. Where you are right now is God’s place for you, live and obey and believe right there. 1 Cor. 7:17
Of course, knowing the word of God and its power, I shouldn’t have been stunned. But I was. Not only was my daughter clearly in the word, but God had given her the perfect verse, telling her to cool her jets and know that she is where she’s supposed to be right now. Wow. Thank you, Lord.
We can’t see what God is doing backstage in our lives and the lives of our children. We can only see what’s going on onstage, and sometimes we wonder if He’s fallen asleep behind the curtain. But the fact is, God’s word is living and active, and it continues to do its work, moment by moment, day by day, 24/7. As the scripture at the top states, the word of God performs its work in us who believe. Even when my daughter was at her furthest from God, I knew she still believed, and that scripture had gotten into her heart and mind through her own reading, as well as it being read and spoken to her.
God’s word is never idle. It is always performing a work. Even when the action going onstage looks bleak, dark and unchanging, God’s word is working behind the scenes in bursts of light, and just when we least expect it, the set will change and the curtain will come up on a scene of surprising, if not shocking beauty and brilliance.
We can stand on that. We can know the word of God performs its work continually, and if we continue to speak God’s word over our lives and the lives of our children and others, one day, we will see God’s spectacular handiwork in the brilliant light of His grace.