There Is More To The Picture–Especially When Ill

“For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” (1 Corinthians 13:12)

“There is more to the picture than meets the eye.” I love that saying.

There is so much truth in it. We often see difficult circumstances through a narrow lens that doesn’t let in all the light or the complete image. We often have tunnel vision that robs us of the entire picture that surrounds us.

When I think of suffering, pain, tragedy and loss, I try to remind myself that what I can understand is entirely limited by the mere fact of my humanity. I’m not God, I don’t know all, cannot see all, cannot understand all that is involved in every situation, but must try to allow God to be God, and trust in His decisions and oversight.

We pass judgment so easily, we are too quick to think the worst.

Humility can be our friend by reminding us that we only see the beginning of the story, just the first few lines in the play, the end can bring us to a conclusion much different than the circumstances right now will allow. When we trust God to bring a good ending to the story, even while the portion we see looks very grim, when all is said and done we will better understand the temporary painful episodes in our lives.

Life can deliver us very painful blows, striking us so hard that we fall to our knees. Afflictions of all sorts and sizes can disable us, cripple us, and make us feel very small compared to our trying circumstances.

When the dark night of trials and tribulations surround us, when depression crushes us with its mountainous weight, it is then that we must look to God, perhaps even in anger and frustration, and ask for His intervention in our lives and in our terrible circumstances. Perhaps our frustration is with God, the answer is still to go to Him, tell Him how we feel, and pour the pain of our lives into His hands. Even that is an act of faith that I believe God will honor.

Our lives are very short on this earth, and sometimes God trusts us with pain and misery, with loss and separation of the things we love and cherish. The Lord may not give us good answers to the losses we feel deep in our hearts, but I think, if we will look up, if we will cling to a shred of hope, we can get through today, and perhaps tomorrow as well.

God gives us our daily bread, and it is day by day that we must carry our burdens and face our hardships trusting that each day His grace and mercy will pull us through.

You may be facing the challenge of your life right now, and despair may be knocking on your door, you may be so angry at God that you would rather curse, than bless His name. This is called “being human”, and our fellowship of suffering is what brings us together.

Being children of God does not mean we are perfect, or always reasonable, or never weak, it merely means we are willing to look up, to call out to God in our circumstances, good or bad, and trust that in the end, when we finally see the entire picture, it will all make sense. Until then, let us lay our pain, frustration, anger, suffering and hardship in His capable hands.

About the Author:
Karlton Douglas lives in Ohio with his lovely wife. He has learned to pour his fears and frustrations out to God.

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Do you feel that you have been robbed, that your loss is greater than you can bear? Are you willing to consider that God sees the entire picture, and we see just a small part, and that we can and must trust God for a good outcome in the end?

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