VCC Vertical Three – Swedish Furniture
I don’t know much about Sweden but I do know I love a certain Swedish Megastore! What I love most is the thought and ingenuity that goes into so many of Swedish Megastore’s products. An ottoman that turns into a bed? Genius! Tables that store toys in bins built into the table top? Clever! Clean design, function and style, products that seem like transformers... And if that wasn’t cool enough they have fun unpronounceable names that make me feel cultured just by buying them? Fantastic!
As you may know, Swedish Megastore continues that innovation into their inventory storage: you buy long, thin, super heavy boxes and then assemble them into the actual furniture pieces at your home.
I’m one of those weird guys that likes to read the instructions; I find it saves me time in the long run. And most times Swedish Megastore instructions are straightforward and simple enough to follow; I’m no Bob Villa but I can usually complete Swedish Megastore assemblies with ease.
But once in a while I come across an instruction that makes no sense. Why would I install the screws on that side, before I attach the other widget? I look at the picture; it makes no sense. I read it again; still nonsensical. I back up and reread the last few steps. I turn it upside down and look at it again. Still not logical. I feel like the bald-ghost-Swedish-Megastore guy in the picture.
Do you ever face circumstances in life that make no sense? Believers know that God is all-powerful, all-knowing, and completely good. Romans 8:28 makes this promise: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Although we understand this promise, at times we each find ourselves standing helpless in the face of a dark situation, looking at all the possibilities and thinking or saying to ourself, “God, I just don’t see how any good could possibly come from this. Every option I see looks bad!” It is a scary moment to experience, when despair seems just around the corner.
Back to my Swedish-Megastore-guy moment. In those moments where I didn’t understand the instructions I decided to continue following the instructions and see how it turned out. I discovered that those Swedish designers are pretty smart; in each case the unexpected step had to happen to allow another part to move or to slide or to fit; if I had done what I thought was logical the end product wouldn’t have worked right.
Isaiah 40:28 tells us “...[God’s] understanding is unsearchable.” Psalm 147:5 teaches us “Great is our Lord, and abundant in power; his understanding is beyond measure.” God’s understanding is so exceedingly greater than ours that we will not always understand, or have the capacity to understand, all the parts of the unfolding of His plan. When Lazarus died his family and friends were greatly grieved. But Jesus explained in John 11:14 that He was glad he was not there to heal Lazarus, that they may believe; He knew He would raise Lazarus from the dead in a way that would strengthen their faith far beyond what healing him would have done.
Jesus explained to the disciples in John 16:20: “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy.” And, of course, Jesus fulfilled that promise by rising from the dead and turning what looked like the worst defeat into the ultimate victory.
Jesus knows His plans for each of our lives. He knows the steps and events and developments that have to unfold to accomplish His purposes, even when we don’t understand them. Would you be willing to trust Jesus with all the events in your life?