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God Is Able
What can God do? Maybe we should turn that around and ask, "What can't God do?" Can you think of anything?
How about that problem you're grappling with? Because you're so close to it, does it seem bigger than God? Does it cast a shadow that seems to hide God's presence? When life's troubles loom over us, we all tend to lose our sense of perspective. As we focus on our problems, God seems to fade into the background of our lives; from our faulty point of view, His presence seems tiny and insignificant.
In times like these, we need to remind ourselves of the simple but incredible description the apostle Paul gives of what God can do. Paul tells us that God "is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine" (Ephesians 3:20).
In order to really grasp that verse in a practical way, I need to break it down into bite-sized truths. Paul is saying that God is able to do ...
What I ask
All I ask.
More than all I ask.
Immeasurably more than all I ask.
What I can imagine.
All I imagine.
More than all I imagine.
Immeasurably more than all I ask or imagine.
Wow! That should be enough for my problems today!
But there's more. Paul tells us how God can do all this. He does it "according to his power that is at work within us." That power is resurrection powerthe power that raised Jesus from the dead, the power of Jesus' "indestructible life" (Hebrews 7:16)!
Maybe you're thinking, "That sounds great, but I don't know exactly how it applies to a practical approach for the problem I'm facing." Well, think of it this way: If God could raise Jesus from the dead, is that power enough for you at the point of your neediness? I'd say so, wouldn't you? The Creator of the universe is ready to use His power in your life.
This power of God's is not merely an abstract capability He reserves for creating planets and stars and universes. He is also at work within us who are His children. Yes, His power lives inside us, working from the inside out. Our part is:
· to cooperate with what He is doing
· not to get in His way
· to let Him achieve in our lives what He wants to
· not to insist on doing things "our" way.
Then His power can bring about what we could never accomplish in our own strength.
So when you put yourself and your dilemma in the middle of this verse of Paul's, what part of your problem is too big for God?
The God of
The Red Sea in front, mountains on two sides, the armies of Egypt bearing down from behind! No visible means of escape!
That's the situation where the children of Israel found themselves. Their predicament was a total surprise, for after all, Pharaoh had just let the people leave Egypt, saying, "Good riddance!" Unfortunately, after the people left, the Egyptian king had a change of heart. Suddenly Pharaoh realized he had just fired his labor force, and he wanted them back.
You probably know the storyGod miraculously blew back the waters of the Red Sea so that His people could cross on dry land. Can you imagine the on-cloud-nine joy of God's people as they stood on the other shore of the Red Sea, safe from their enemies? A song of praise surged from their hearts:
I will sing to the Lord, for he is highly exalted. The horse and its rider he has hurled into the sea. The Lord is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father's God, and I will exalt him. Exodus 15:1-2
Notice that phrase "He is my God." The God they were singing about was the God who had brought ten miraculous-though-miserable plagues on the Egyptians in order to move Pharaoh's heart to let them leave Egypt. But now He was also the God of the Red Sea crossing! They now knew this miracle-working God was their God! Israel had the God of the Impossible Situation on their side!
What kind of God do you have today? Is He the God of the impossible? An old gospel chorus based on a song written during the building of the Panama Canal, says,
Got any rivers
you think are uncrossable?
Got any mountains
you can't tunnel through?
in things thought impossible.
And He can do
what no other one can do.
You, too, can say, "He is my God!" If you offer Him the throne of your life, He will give you His guidance when you face the Red Sea of the Impossible Situation. He will be your God, too!
Excerpted from Encouraging Words for Women by Darlene Sala. Copyright © 2002 by Darlene Sala. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.