As I enjoy my morning cup of coffee (okay, cupS- I like my coffee!), I peer out the not-quite-clean window (it IS winter, and I feed birds on the sill, after all) and am greeted by the incredible view of our front yard and pasture as a winter wonderland. Snow seems to brighten up the days, reflecting any minuscule rays of sun that manage to sneak through the thick cloud cover. It is quiet out there right now, but yesterday my view was this:
Birds flock to our feeders in the midst of a snowstorm! If you look closely, you should see a woodpecker at the far feeder. I love watching them. There is just something about birds that soothes my soul and brings a smile to my face (unless they are full grown turkeys headed for my garden or porch, no smiles then).
I started reading the book of Acts yesterday, and these verses grabbed my attention.
“Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, ‘Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?’ And He said to them, ‘It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.’ ” ~ Acts 1:6-8
Lord, will you at this time … ? Aren’t we curious, anxious beings, wanting to know what God is going to do, and when, preferably soon?! We want things to happen in our time, at the same speed that our latte or burger is ready at the drive-up window.
But Jesus replied, gently yet firmly, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.”
It is not for you to know. Why? Perhaps because we cannot understand why God delays or causes things to happen in a way that we never would have chosen. Perhaps because we could never bear to carry the knowledge of what the future holds. Perhaps because God is God, and we are not.
Rest, little children, in this truth, that it is not for you to know times or seasons. It’s okay.
Jesus then encouraged His disciples by reaffirming the promise of the coming Helper, the Holy Spirit. Through His power, they would be able to rest in God’s timing for all things, and not their own.
Notice that Jesus did reveal part of God’s plan to the disciples: “You shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” They were not told what their futures held (a heavy burden for men who would be martyred), but that with the power of the Holy Spirit, they would be witnesses to all the world for Jesus. The Great Commission.
” ‘Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?’ ” ~ Matthew 6:26
Birds go about their business, living in the moment, not worrying about their future (which may be a barn kitty’s meal…I keep telling them to catch rodents only, NOT birds, but do they listen?).
We should go about our business, the Father’s business, living in the moment, not worrying about our future.
It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. God’s got this, no need to worry. He is all-knowing, all-powerful, ever-present, and always abounding in grace ~ unearned, undeserved, love and mercy and forgiveness and kindness. We can trust Him. 🙂