What we need in our moment of need.

Worry doesn’t work. Because just like we can’t anticipate what we really need, we also can’t anticipate the lavish grace that will meet us there.

DSC_0023

Where’s it going to come from?

The question hung in the humid air of the screened-in porch as I sat there, knees pulled tightly to my chest. Steam poured from my cup of tea, all sluggish and slow. Letting it out of that mug into the heavy air felt like pouring a Dixie cup of water into the ocean.

It didn’t really seem to go anywhere.

And neither did my questions.

Will I have the strength for that?

What will I say to them if that thing they’re dreading happens?

Where will the things I need come from if I decide to go that direction?

A bird sang.

I sat. Quiet.

The questions lingered like the steam.

And then suddenly, without warning, it was pouring. Deluge-style pouring. Split seconds ago, the air was heavy with moisture unseen, but now the clouds were ripped open at the seams and spilling their contents onto the back porch with ferocity. Rain made oceans on the concrete and gushed at full strength through the gutters.

And in rushed His Word.

“Look at the birds of the air: They neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” (Matthew 6:26)

I watched the rain splash against the screen, slapping against it and rolling in sheets over the porch out into the yard.

“God, I know you give us all things in the moment we need them.”

This past Sunday, our pastor Matt preached from Matthew 15, the story of Jesus feeding the 4,000. From just a few loaves of bread, everyone ate and had more than they could finish … and that was after three days of hanging out in the wilderness, wondering when they might eat again. Jesus tore that bread until there were seven extra baskets full of uneaten bread.

Why seven extra baskets? God knew exactly how much was needed. And there was no one else around to eat the leftovers.

“Those seven extra baskets are a picture of God’s lavish grace.”

Because God is so much more. So, so much more than anything we can ask or think.

DSC_0025

I remember a few years back when my friend Abbey’s dad passed away after a long battle with cancer. That thing had finally happened, the thing she wondered if she would know how to deal with if and when it happened.

What she said in that moment stuck with me. “I couldn’t have imagined the way it would hurt. But I also couldn’t have imagined the way God would give me grace in a way I had never experienced it before. It’s sweeter than anything I could’ve imagined.”

The sky ripped open.

Grace rushed down with ferocity.

And that’s why worry doesn’t work.

Because just like we can’t anticipate what we really need, we also can’t anticipate the lavish grace that will meet us there.

A lot of times we think of grace as “decaffeinated grace” that pats us on the hand and tells us everything’s going to be okay, Matt said, quoting Dane Ortlund’s “Defiant Grace.”

But that’s never what grace was meant to be.

What God rains down on us in our moment of need is the high-octane grace that takes our conscience by the scruff of the neck and breathes new life into us with a pardon so scandalous that we cannot help but be changed.”

We get seven baskets extra.

We get God and all the peace, provision, joy and hope He has to offer.

And we get that by walking with Him willingly into the wilderness, following His voice, not knowing when the bread will come, but valuing His presence above what fills our stomachs.

He’s never failed us yet. We see that in His Word. We see it in our lives.

And we trust it for tomorrow.

*****

morevaluethanthey

5 Comments on “What we need in our moment of need.

  1. Hi Grace! I have been worrying a lot lately – many life changes making me feel completely vulnerable and bushwhacked. But God is calling through the din of the worry and slowly I’m starting to hear him. I realize, just because my life is abnormal in every area the past few months, doesn’t mean I have the right or need to worry. God is very present and will not let me drown. In fact, he calms the waves in my heart so I can bob through the water without drinking too much. Thanks for your words. I feel hope in my soul.

Leave a reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: