Why Did They Make it That Way?
Read: Psalm 139:13-16; Ephesians 2:10; 2 Corinthians 4:7
I was going to hang my coat in the closet when I noticed something a bit odd. The door knob turned but the door didn't open. I thought that most likely, it was merely stuck; so, I pulled a bit harder and turned the knob back and forth. The door still didn't open; so, I called my husband to check it. He did the good things he knew to do like spraying it with lubricant and doing a bit more jiggling and pulling. Nothing doing. It was about that time that we noticed something we hadn't observed prior to this. There were no screws on the outside of the knob; so, gaining access to the closet by simply unscrewing the knob was not an option. Not to be deterred, we consulted the Internet. Different methods and little tools were suggested that might allow access to the closet. The result? The door remained shut. The funny thing I noticed about myself is that I kept asking why anyone would make a knob like that. The very screws that could have made removal so simple were tucked away on the inside. Interestingly enough, no matter how many times I repeated that phrase, it didn't help. I wasn't any closer to hanging up my coat the third time I queried than I was after the first time I asked the question. By the way, the right combination of tools and prodding did finally open the door. Later, the rest of the story concerning the knob.
As I thought about my oft-repeated question, it dawned on me that it is also easy for me to get stuck on the why of a circumstance rather than the way God might want to work in and through it. It is, of course, normal to wonder why.
1. Why do we have certain abilities and lack others we might wish we had?
2. Why do we have certain limitations that seem to get in the way of fruitfulness that we desire?
3. Why is there brokenness in relationships when we long to see them made whole?
And on and on the list could go. When it comes right down to it, perhaps we are asking God why He made us the way He did? There is no shame in the question, and If the Lord chooses to do so, He might answer us. However, more than not, the question of why God has chosen to put us together as He has hangs in the air, at least for now. No matter how many times we ask it. Thankfully, we have precious truth tucked away in the Bible to nourish ourselves, even prior to knowing why God has made us the way He has.
1. Psalm 139:13-16 is startlingly beautiful. Our formation in the wombs of our mothers was overseen and planned by God. That lack? He has put me together with full knowledge of it. That gift? He has built it in as well as the way it will be honed in my life. That family with all of its failings and beauty? I came into it at the time He chose, whether or not my parents acknowledged that or not. None of this truth rests on whys; rather, it springs out of the wonder of an all-powerful Creator/Designer. We are, according to God's assessment fearfully and wonderfully made. Even when the why concerning a deficit we have, goes unanswered.
2. In Ephesians 2:10, we learn another wondrous truth. We are God's workmanship in the here-and-now. He has good works for us to do, and He is at work preparing us so that we can accomplish all He has planned for us. Think of it. The One Who created the beautiful mountain vistas and the beauty of the rainbows says that we, His grace bought children, Ephesians 2:8-9 are His workmanship. He has given us the earth with all of its beauty to enjoy, 1 Timothy 6:17. The animals as amazing and varied as they are haven't been prepared to do His good works. That honor is reserved for us. In 2 Samuel 7, King David told the prophet Nathan of his desire to build God a temple. There was nothing sinful about David's desire; however, God said no. God loved David. He even called him a man after His heart, Acts 13:22. Even so, God did not allow David to do that good work. Instead, it was reserved for his son, Solomon.
3. In 2 Corinthians 4:7, we are reminded that though we were knit together by the Creator in the womb and even though we are His workmanship, we are also simple clay pots. We have been given great honor because of Whose we are, but our weaknesses and broken places are our reminders that all we have comes from the Hand of God, 1 Corinthians 4:7. We are mere human beings whose privilege it is to be indwelt by the Holy Spirit, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20. Paul the apostle understood being a clay pot and having weaknesses. In 2 Corinthians 12:7-10, Paul spoke honestly of his desire to be free from what he called a thorn in the flesh. Three times, Paul asked for relief from whatever this was. God said no. God told Paul that His power would show up best in the apostle's weakness. Like the beauty of gold resting on black velvet, God's help, beauty and strength would be seen through Paul's infirmities more than it would be seen if God took them away. That news caused Paul to rejoice even in his great struggle because God would be seen through it.
Back to the door knob. Why did they make it that way? I don't know, but one fact is certain. Unlike us, the door knob has little value, and because it was broken when it was removed, we threw it away. Even though it had purpose, it wasn't worth treasuring or keeping. How differently God looks at us, the Ones He has made. We are so valuable to Him that He sent Jesus to save us from the slavery of our sin, John 3:16. To Jesus, we are worth seeking and saving, Luke 19:10. He said that anyone who would come to Him, He would never throw away or cast out, John 6:37.
Why has He made us the way He has? Often, we don't know; however, we can be certain that the Lord desires that we become His children, John 1:11-12.