The most important thing about having faith in God is understanding that we will never understand how God thinks nor will we ever comprehend the purpose of his ways—not until we can see clearly instead of seeing “through a mirror dimly.”1 Not until we reach the place that Jesus is preparing for us, in the “Father’s house,” where there “are many rooms.”2 Jesus promised us: “I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.”3 And in the meantime, he implores us, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.”4
But we are troubled! 🙁 It is difficult to “believe in God” when we do not understand how he thinks or understand why he does what he does. Does God withhold from us the purpose of his ways intentionally? Well . . . 🤔 sometimes. Why is that? Well . . . 🤔 let’s just concede to the idea that “the secret things belong to the Lord our God.”5 In other words, in this life we will never know everything we want to know! But why is that? Now, that question I can answer. 😉 Actually, Isaiah has answered it for us: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.”6 And let’s just pause right there and meditate on that.
God does not think like we do. God’s thoughts are not only different from ours they are inconceivably better than ours. And I really do mean inconceivably. We cannot even imagine God’s way of thinking for he “is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.”7 So let me repeat: God’s “thoughts are not your thoughts.” We will never understand how he thinks. It will always be beyond our capacity. And therefore, we must have faith in him.
Having faith in God is not a matter of understanding why things happen, but rather being perfectly okay with not understanding why things happen because we have faith; we “believe in God.” We have peace—we rest in the understanding that God loves us unconditionally and will never stop loving us. We have peace—we rest in the understanding that nothing can separate us from his love and that the best is yet to come! We have peace—we rest in spite of the turmoil in our lives. We, who choose to have faith in God—and it is a choice—even though our circumstances tempt us to be anxious are not anxious because we know “the Lord is near,” and we are never alone. We, who choose to have faith—and it is a choice—will possess “the peace of God” which will absolutely baffle most unbelievers and many believers as well. 😦 They will not understand how we can be at peace in our troubling situation, and, frankly, we ourselves will not be able to explain our peace because “the peace of God transcends all understanding.”8
And that’s why the most important thing about having faith in God is understanding that we will never understand how God thinks nor will we ever comprehend the purpose of his ways. Faith is trusting that the one in whom we have faith will be faithful. For the Lord declares, “For my thoughts not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.”6 Isaiah ends his mini-sermon with this encouragement: God’s thoughts and his ways of doing things—regardless of how they appear to us—will always be purposeful. The Lord declares, Whatever happens to you—whether you understand it or not—it “shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.”9😀
Faith is not understanding why things happen. Faith is “understanding that the unwelcome change in the plan is the mighty work of the omnipotent hand.”*
11 Corinthians 13:12 2John 14:2 3John 14:3 4John 14:1 5Deuteronomy 29:29 6Isaiah 55:8 7Ephesians 3:20 8Philippians 4:7 9Isaiah 55:11 *McDermet, Deborah. “Big Picture.”