Seeing the Invisible
NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope is uncovering a universe that until now was invisible … including a star birthing that looks more like a majestic dust storm enhanced with glittering stars in an image that only Hollywood could produce.
As we continue to study the “last frontier,” we can only wonder what else is left to discover, and for some the possibility includes finding life on other planets, and maybe even seeing God.
Although we as Christians tend to hold fast to the belief that God, and possibly other celestial beings, will be revealed after the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, the waiting can get hard to bear at times. And when our prayers don’t seem to be answered, we can feel alone, forgotten, forsaken.
Just look at the life of Joseph. Almost murdered by his brothers and then sold by them into slavery, he found himself in a foreign land where he then was framed for a crime that landed him in prison. He remained there for several years before finally being recognized by the Egyptians as a vessel of God who, because of his faith, could save them from certain death. Fortunately, he could look back at his life and see that, like Paul writes in Romans 8:28, the seen and unseen worked together for the greater good … even if it meant some suffering in the process.
Habakkuk didn’t seem to have the same patience as demonstrated by Joseph, as Habakkuk’s recorded prayers could be compared more or less to angry and distraught outbursts. This prophet demanded to know why God let injustice reign while seemingly neglecting to hear the prayers of the just and downtrodden. And unbelievably, God answered by saying that more evil was to come, something which Habakkuk could not swallow. God even admitted that the purpose of the coming evil cannot be fathomed or understood by humanity (until given the gift of hindsight), but that ultimately the greater good would come of it.
Connecting: When it comes to feeling like God’s ears are closed to your suppositions, do you relate more with Joseph or Habakkuk?
Sharing: Read Hebrews 11, which summarizes faith by threading together all sorts of unseen events, many of which Christians still struggle accepting as fact. How do you feel about the following events that rose/rise out of the unknown? Once you have reviewed the Scripture verses and addressed the prompts listed below, revisit Hebrews 11:13.
- Creation (Hebrews 11:3)
- The circumcision of the heart (Hebrews 11:4)
- Life after/without the experience of death (Hebrews 11:5-6)
- Rain and the Flood (Hebrews 11:7)
- Making a home in an unknown land (Hebrews 11:8-10)
- Pregnancy despite biological impossibility (Hebrews 11:11-12)
Applying: There are many who, unless they have a revelation from God like Saul did on the road to Damascus, will not believe. Think of how will you describe an “invisible” God, and the concept of faith, to one of these people. Feel free to ask others for their advice.