We live in a world that cherishes “Keeping it together” and “maitaining composure”. We value schedules, familiarity, plans, ‘no funny business’, and ‘expecting the unexpected’. We live in a world where we like our ‘wonder’ planned and controlled. Many of these values are all well and good, but I fear that as these aspects of life have become overstressed, we find ourselves on the brink of mundacity and triviality. We go through much of life not having our heart skip a beat, feeling our eyebrows raise, or sensing the skin on the back of our neck stick straight up. We find comfort in remaining methodical. We play it safe.
Now, let’s switch over and take a look at the way God typically interacts with the humanity He has created. As you begin to read the biblical revelation there it quickly becomes evident that our God is a master at the ‘element of Suprise’. He appears to love surprises. He revels in them. Consider some of these passages:
Genesis 45:25-27 So they went up out of Egypt and came to their father Jacob in the land of Canaan. They told him, “Joseph is still alive! In fact, he is ruler of all Egypt.” Jacob was stunned; he did not believe them. But when they told him everything Joseph had said to them, and when he saw the carts Joseph had sent to carry him back, the spirit of their father Jacob revived.
Exodus 14:29-30 But the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with a wall of water on their right and on their left. That day the LORD saved Israel from the hands of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians lying dead on the shore.
Exodus 34:10 Then the LORD said: “I am making a covenant with you. Before all your people I will do wonders never before done in any nation in all the world. The people you live among will see how awesome is the work that I, the LORD, will do for you.
Ruth 4:14 The women said to Naomi: “Praise be to the LORD, who this day has not left you without a kinsman-redeemer. May he become famous throughout Israel!
1 Samuel 3:11 And the LORD said to Samuel: “See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make the ears of everyone who hears of it tingle.
Habakkuk 1:5 “Look at the nations and watch—
and be utterly amazed.
For I am going to do something in your days
that you would not believe,
even if you were told.
For when you did awesome things that we did not expect,
you came down, and the mountains trembled before you.
Matthew 12:23 All the people were astonished and said, “Could this be the Son of David?”
Matthew 24:30 “At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory.
Matthew 28:2-4 There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.
Mark 5:42 Immediately the girl stood up and walked around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished.
Luke 5:9 For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken,
Luke 24:36-37 While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost.
Romans 6:5 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.
Romans 11:33-34 Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom andknowledge of God!
How unsearchable his judgments,
and his paths beyond tracing out!
“Who has known the mind of the Lord?
Or who has been his counselor?”
Revelation 3:3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; obey it, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.
Even a sparse overview of these few passages reveals to us a God who likes to surprise people with salvation, deliverance, and judgment. He catches us off guard with his timing, he stuns us by the extent of his lavished love, and dumbfounds us with his extravagent mercy and grace. He makes surpsising an unexpected routine of his unsearchable ways.
Here’s some questions for you: Have you surprised anyone lately with the love of Christ? Have you done the unexpected for someone recently that would give them reason to praise our surprising God? Are you still surprised by the grace and mercy of Jesus?
I am so thankful that Jesus surprised me with such undeserved salvation and hope in the future! Let’s surprise people to fall in love with Jesus!!!
Be in wonder of our surprising Savior, Jesus!!!