Encouragement · Weekend Word Devotions

Weekend Word: When It Feels Like God Isn’t Coming Through

[Today’s devotion on trusting in God is part of the Weekend Word devotional series. Come back every Saturday to get refreshed through the reading of God’s Word.]

Today’s Scripture: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
10 As the rain and the snow
come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:8-11, NIV)

Rain can frustrate plans for the day. Listening to the rain fall at night can be soothing while I lay in bed, waiting to fall asleep, but when it falls during the day it can throw a wrench into my plans. This is especially true if there are more rainy days in a week than sunny.

Although the rain can upset my plans, God uses it to water the earth and cultivate lush and beautiful foliage. In hindsight, missing out on a day of outdoor activities is much more preferable to walking outside to a dry, barren landscape.

It can be difficult to understand God’s purposes in the moment.

Has God promised you something? Maybe He’s promised you fruit in your ministry or a particular purpose for your life. You might have a plan for how you might achieve that goal. You have an idea about how to get there and what steps you need to take.

Then, a wrench gets thrown into your plans. Suddenly, nothing is working out the way you thought it would, and that promise God gave to you seems completely out of reach. If we’re not careful, this is the point where discouragement sets in and we give up on our vision.

It’s in these times we need to remember Isaiah 55:9 where God tells us that His ways are higher than ours. The problem we often have is that we cling too closely to the plans that we made to achieve our goals. When things don’t work out, we may jump to the conclusion that maybe we misunderstood God’s promise. The reality is, it wasn’t God’s plan that didn’t work, it was ours.

But God’s plans are better. Just as He knows the rain is needed to water the earth, He also knows what the best path is to accomplish His promises. He goes on to say in this passage in Isaiah that His Word always accomplishes the purpose for which He sent it. If God promised you something, He will do it, no matter what the circumstances look like at the time.

When things don’t seem to be working out the way we had hoped, we need to remember to turn our discouragement into trust that God knows what He’s doing and will keep His promises to us.

Today’s Thoughts: What’s something that God has promised to you? Are things working out the way you had hoped? If they are, can you see God’s hand in making that happen? If not, how can you shift feelings of discouragement into acts of trust in God’s promises?

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