Thursday, May 3, 2018

Surprises

“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” (Ephesians 3:20-21 NIV)

My friend called it “the best surprise ever!” For the past several months, I have been making plans for my wife’s birthday. It is a significant one (today) and I wanted to make it special. So I arranged for her twin sister to fly from South Africa last week to surprise her. And was she ever surprised! Shocked, is how she described it later. I can honestly say I have never been more pleased to see the two of them together and enjoying one another’s company as they mark a milestone in their lives.

Not all surprises are welcomed ones, of course. The unexpected news of a death, an accident, or a marital affair, to name a few, are ones we never want to experience. But a good surprise is one that can bring more joy than almost anything else. And while I may have pulled off a great surprise, contrary to my friend’s claim, it is not among the greatest. There is One who is in a category all His own—Jesus. He was always pulling surprises on folks.

Think about it. He was God, yet became a human, beginning His life on earth in a cattle stall in a “one stoplight town.” He was considered a religious leader, but He confounded those who were religious. He was sinless, but spent all of His time with sinners. He was the Messiah, but He did not pursue earthly power. His disciples were surprised by His death and even more surprised by His resurrection. He was full of surprises. He still is.

I am continually surprised by my life and what Jesus has done with it. I could not have imagined it, even in my wildest dreams! More than 40 years since I first stepped on the path of following my Lord, He has transformed my life into something I would not have recognized or dreamed of when I was 19. I could write pages about what He has done, but suffice it to say, I continue to be surprised by His work in my life.

The reality for many of us is we have a very narrow view of what to expect out of life, and, more importantly, from God. Our imaginations, and therefore our desires, are small. It is our human nature. We bring the Lord down to our size and expectations. But He is oh so much bigger and grander than what we think or can imagine! Immeasurably so. 

Today, know that life can be filled with so many good surprises if you place your life in the hands of the Lord and trust Him with it. He wants to transform you in ways you can’t even imagine. He is full of surprises and He still has many in store for you.

© Jim Musser 2018

Author's Note: Due to the aforementioned birthday of my wife, this will be my final devotion for the school year as we are traveling to celebrate it. This may also be my last Words from the Well, or maybe not. I am still processing whether, after 21 years, I want to continue writing it. That decision will be made later this summer. I know I want to continue writing, but I may want to branch out more into areas about which I have become passionate and write more in-depthly, rather than 3-5 paragraphs.  So we'll see what the future holds.  I am indeed open to another surprise!  

Have a blessed summer or winter, depending on your location!  Jim

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