Do you remember the first time you were surprised at the sight of a rainbow? I do. I was just a young girl when it caught my eye from a distance. Brilliant rose red, transformed into tangerine orange and then blended into canary-lemon yellow. Soon the yellow melded into the grandest green my eyes had ever seen. Captured by its beauty, I realized the green that transfixed my gaze was equaled in its splendor by the bold blue laying by its side. Deeper than blue sky, it held its own majesty and beckoned for all to see it. Though exquisite, the blue was not the crowning glory of the rainbow. The rich deep blue/purple color of indigo instantly engaged my senses making me feel a little more alive. And then, as if a mighty crescendo had reached its peak in a masters orchestral symphony, it softly coalesced itself into a vibrant violet bringing an end to wonderment painted in the sky. Alone each color was magnificent: together the colors were glorious, breath taking and surreal.
I’m not sure that anything surprises my heart more than the elegant beauty of God’s creation. From the amazing beauty of the Northern lights, to the colorful strange worlds found only under the seas; God’s creativity can shock sensibilities and bring even the toughest of characters humbly to their knees.
Is it any wonder then why we love a successful surprise? I believe, when God created us in his image one of the characteristics he placed in us was the ability to enjoy surprises. Even more so, I believe he planted in our spirits the ability to warm hearts, bring joy and perhaps even change the trajectory of someone’s day or life through an unexpected surprise.
Take a moment and look at one of the most endearing compilations of surprises I’ve seen in awhile. (forgive the language slip in one of the clips)
Just beautiful! Perfectly orchestrated surprises easily brings tears to our eyes.
Unfortunately, in the world we live in, a lot of the surprises that happen do not bring overflowing joy. People are often surprised by an unexpected illness, the loss of a job, a fractured friendship or multiple other types of unsettling news. That’s why we, as believers, need to stand up, look around and find ways to surprise each other with tangible acts of God’s love. Just as the Lord is intentional in creating surprises through out nature, we too need to be intentional in surprising those around us creatively, personally and without hesitation.
Even more so, in times of trial, we need to be intentional and choose to trust our loving Heavenly Father’s heart enough that we are able to recognize his surprises that he sends our way. His surprises, his blessing, are there for us to enjoy and celebrate even when the things that surround us are hard. We need to not be blinded by our circumstances but rather look with expectation and excitement for how the Lord will surprise us and then wait patiently for his perfect timing.
Just a few examples from our lives…
Since Phillip has been out of work, the Lord has surprised us through unexpected provisions and inexplicable peace. It would be so easy in our current circumstances to miss some of these provisions. However, with open eyes and hearts we are able to embrace these unexpected gifts from the King. I can’t imagine where we would be right now practically or emotionally without these “kisses from Heaven”. Each time I am surprised by the Lord’s never ending kindness, I find myself wanting to exclaim…
Through out my recovery from my brain injury we have been surprised by some pretty exciting healing in my body, new friendships, countless acts of kindness and deeper treasured relationships with old friends and family. Most of all, we’ve been surprised by the gift of new dreams and hopes in the midst of a very hopeless situation. Prior to my health struggles, we could have never understood the profound needs people go through during major medical crisis. Because of my brain injury though, we have new understanding and have been able to start a ministry in our church that helps people who are walking similar roads to ours. I couldn’t have ever imagined the joy I would feel sitting and listening to someone who is where I once was — just being there for them — praying with them — believing for them. Such a surprising and rewarding new direction for my life.
We serve a God of miracles big and small. We love a Lord who is personal and who loves to surprise us in many creative ways. We can join him on this adventure of surprise and wonderment. We can believe him for what need, find joy in the creative ways he meets those needs and then be creative in how we meet the needs of others.
I can only imagine what this life would be like if we spent our days in awe of God’s amazing surprises and then turned that awe into action where we sought to surprise those around us by joyfully and practically meeting each others needs. I’m in…how about you?