Word for Word 11/17/21

Vicar Abraham Faugstad
Vicar Abraham Faugstad

We just don’t know!

“When I applied my heart to know wisdom, and to see the business that is done on earth, how neither day nor night do one’s eyes see sleep, then I saw all the work of God, that man cannot find out the work that is done under the sun. However much man may toil in seeking, he will not find it out. Even though a wise man claims to know, he cannot find it out” (Ecclesiastes 8:16-17).

King Solomon was the wisest man on the earth (I Kings 10:23). Solomon’s wisdom was known throughout the world and all kinds of people would come from far and near just to learn and see his wisdom. In the verses above, Solomon, the wisest man on the earth, teaches us a very important truth - we cannot be certain of God’s purpose behind each event.

There is something satisfying in trying to comprehend how God is working in our lives. What has God done in my life and why? There can even be good intentions for wanting to know “why.” Perhaps we are trying to see how God is turning something terrible in our lives or community into good. But the hard reality is that no matter how much we want or try to understand God’s action in our lives, it’s impossible to be certain. We cannot look into the mind of God, “However much man may toil in seeking, he will not find it out.”

While the unknown may be frustrating at times, there is also a comfort in the fact that we just don’t know. Rather than trying to make sense of everything that happens in life, we can recognize that God’s plan and purpose will always prevail. And His plans are much better than ours! It was His plan to send His only begotten Son into the world to be our Savior from sin and death.

It was God’s plan, that through Jesus’ death on the cross, He would give life to all people. It was His plan to work faith in our hearts through His Word by the power of the Holy Spirit so that we may believe in Jesus and have the wonderful hope of eternal life in heaven!

When we struggle with understanding God’s plan in our lives, may we follow Solomon’s advice, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5), knowing full well that His plan and purpose is far greater than anything we could ever imagine.

Vicar Abraham Faugstad
King of Grace Lutheran Church ELS, Waukon and Trinity Lutheran Churches