And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”

Luke 17: 6

 

The basic laws of nature are at work all around us every day and all of the time. They hold our world together and keep things in their reliably assigned places. They also become rogue agents and tear our lives apart and disrupt the best developed of our plans. When our world is on its good behavior it is miraculously enjoyable, and when it is in its manic, out of control phases it is terrifying and impossibly hard to understand.

 

Unfortunately, Jesus is not giving us a way to take control over all of this chaos of nature. He is not telling us that our faith, if sufficiently constant and well placed in Him, will grant us the ability to hold God-like sway over these natural laws. The Kingdom of God is not a place where we can redecorate the landscape by planting trees in the lagoon, and we can’t stop the hurricane or the typhoon from its destructive path. This is not the sort of manifestation of faith that has any real value to God as it is not the sort of service to Him that He desires from us.

 

Christ wants His people to serve Him out of a simple, very direct faith. Christ is real in this world. He takes us out of a life in which we are the victims of the evil that seems to rule the day here, and He places us into a spiritual relationship that our faith-infused imaginations now grasp as our reality. It is from the perspective of this relationship that all that happens around and to us in this world begins to gain a sense of order and that we can comprehend God’s will and plan for redemption in the middle of the storm. Even the smallest grain of faith leads to hope, and hope leads to understanding. Then, as a result of God’s true law of nature, understanding brings us to service to our Lord.

The Lord established the earth upon its foundations, so that it will not totter forever and ever.

Psalm 104: 5

 

Am I alone in wondering about the accuracy of this comment? The world that I live in seems to be spinning far off of its axis. It seems to be so wobbly that I am amazed when there is a day where I don’t hear about some sort of major natural disaster. Our news is filled with unending accounts of lives turned upside down and whole countries thrust into chaos by what seems to be the whims of climate and instability of the earth. Additionally, these natural events aren’t even the most terrifying and disturbing of happenings, for the cruelty, anger, and hatred that people act out against each other leaves the destructive forces of nature in their wake.

 

Yet, as simplistic as this might sound, I trust God to be true to His word and to follow through with what He pledges. Thus, my mind needs to reconcile the fact that the earth seems to be totally off its foundation with God’s commitment to keep it firmly rooted there. My greatest challenge in understanding all of this is my own lack of perspective and my tendency to get caught up in the wrong things. The Lord is looking at this world from a viewpoint that sees its beginning and that contemplates the glory of its restoration through Christ’s return at the end of this age. He is allowing all of this current upheaval so that we will understand the severity of the consequences of our sinful disobedience to His created plan. Additionally, the disastrous mess that we people cause when we operate outside of God’s will does tend to lead us to seek the Lord and to desire His loving involvement in our lives.

 

Although the world around me continues to be touched by earthquake and flood, by disease and famine, and by the horrors of violence and oppression, my understanding of these events is made clearer by my relationship with Christ. He grants me perspective, hope, and confidence in facing today. He also implores me to b involved in doing something about all of the related suffering. As I seek Christ’s perspective, my own world is truly set on its foundation, and nothing can knock me out of the grip of my God. In a day when many of the people around me are shaken and disoriented, the Lord wants me to have a voice that tells about the solid rock that my soul stands upon and that cares for and comforts the injured, sick, and oppressed around me in the name of their savior, Jesus Christ.