Dec 252013 9 Responses

God Shows Up In Unexpected Places

God is predictable in His unpredictability. There is a pattern seen through Scripture and highlighted at Christmas. God delights in surprising us, in revealing the ways in which he is not like us.

One of the most common deceptions of humanity is to believe God acts, thinks, and believes exactly like us. Rarely does God do what we expect.

We read the Bible, in part, to see what is wrong with us and what is right with Jesus. We read to understand who God is.

If humanity should be certain of anything it is that we never know what God might do next.

The Christmas story confirms one pattern of God—He shows up in unexpected places.

It began in the garden after Adam and Eve sinned. What kind of God shows up to rebellious humanity?

It continues through the choosing of Israel and God’s faithfulness despite their disobedience. Throughout the Biblical record, God shows up in unexpected places.

The Christmas story is one of the best examples. In an unexpected place, through an unexpected woman, at the most unexpected time, God shows up in the most unexpected way—as a little baby.

This is the pattern of God.

God shows up in unexpected places for:

Abraham in old age

Ballaam in a donkey

Caleb in a winless war

Daniel in a lion’s den

Eve through the pains of childbearing

Felix in truth spoken by a common criminal

Gideon in a wool fleece

Hosea in an unfaithful wife

Isaiah in the death of his King

Jacob in a wrestling match

King David in the death of a child

Lazarus in his own death

Moses in a shrub

Noah in an ark

Onesimus in a letter

Peter on the shore

Queen Esther in a kidnapping

Ruth in a foreign land

Samuel in the middle of the night

Timothy in his youthful years

Uzziah in a disease

Vashti in a demotion

the Widow in two mites

Xerxes in a second marriage

Yoshua in a rag-tag army

Zacchaeus in a tree

God shows up in unexpected places:

When choosing a people he came to the smallest.

When choosing a king he came to the youngest.

When choosing disciples he came to the least qualified.

When choosing a gospel spreader he came to the gospel hater.

Israel expected blessing through birth-order, but God chose the second son.

They expected God would protect the strong, but His law protected the widows, the fatherless, and the alien.

They expected the Messiah would come from the religious elite, but he came from a young woman.

They expected the Messiah in Jerusalem, but he was born in Bethlehem.

They expected he would come in glory, but he came in infancy.

They excepted he would take up the crown, but he took up a Cross.

They expected he would praise the Pharisees and chastise the sinners, but he chastised the Pharisees and loved the sinners.

They expected he would ignore the poor, but he promised them something more.

They expected he would honor their traditions, but he hated their positions.

They expected he would take up a sword, but he took up a cross.

God shows up in unexpected places.

It’s the pattern of God to shock and surprise in the place that we least expect.

Imagine the potential that idea brings to this day.

It means God can use your greatest heartache. He can work through your greatest trial. He can reveal himself through your greatest pain.

It means when things don’t go right, we should have more expectation of God revealing Himself rather than less.

It means we can embrace the sorrows of life because God most often uses them to change us.

It means there should never be a moment in which we think God is not at work.

He is always at work, always revealing Himself, always doing more than we can imagine.

God shows up in unexpected places.

Who would have ever thought God would show up as an illegitimate child in Bethlehem to a couple from Nazareth?

Who would ever think He would make Himself known to us?

God shows up in unexpected places…which means He could show up today.

9 Responses to God Shows Up In Unexpected Places
  1. […] Christmas is often a season spent with family and friends. Because that’s the expectation, any...

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