I’m not sure what’s happening but I am sure that something’s going on. It may not be visible to the naked eye or for that matter under a microscope or through a telescope but something is happening. My mind cannot fathom it nor can my body feel it, I can’t smell it or hear it but something is happening. The outcome remains unknown and the path unrevealed but I cannot give up because God is doing something.
The truth is undeniable but it is also undefinable.
Prophecy predicted the future and Jesus fulfilled these words from the past. The truth was undeniable, God was at work, He had a plan and He put into motion the pieces that brought it to fruition. This is undeniable and yet in so many ways undefinable.
We look back through the lens of a completed compilation of books. We not only have the prophesies of the Old Testament and the historical record of their completion (the Gospels) we have the luxury of seeing the aftermath, the response of those who followed Christ and the defence they gave to those who doubted.
We must remember that in the middle of all this taking place, of Jesus fulfilling the prophesies and the witnesses sharing what they knew to be true, people still failed to recognize that something was going on. Even those who understood the importance of what had taken place, the undeniable truth revealed, could not fathom, could not define what it would mean to the generations that would follow.
To observe every detail does not reveal the final outcome.
Move up close to an oil painting. Look at each brushstroke. Look at the mixture of colours. Look at the textures. Look at the layers of paint. Do all this and you will see every inch of the painting but never see the painting as a whole.
If you were able to go back and watch the artist create their masterpiece you would see the blank canvas become a rough sketch, something that resembles the direction the artist will take. You would see the paint mixed on the pallet. You would see the paint applied on the canvas, blended with the other colours.
Even the artist has to step back to fully judge the outcome of their work. It may or may not meet the approval of its creator and time will only tell if it will become significant in the eyes of the art world, but while it was being created it was no more than the actions of its painter added to the previous actions of that same painter.
We all apply colourful brushstrokes to a large canvas every day of our lives.
Some of us do not have an artistic bone in our bodies and yet we all create a painting of sorts. Our landscape is life itself, our portrait is us and our medium is words and actions, conversations and interactions. Everything we do is a brushstroke, our intents are the different colours mixed in our minds and blended with the brushstrokes and colours of those we interact with.
If we don’t step back we only see the brushstrokes and colours of the events and interactions directly around us. We witness the world up close failing to see the broader picture. We wonder if anything more is going on than what we are experiencing in our little corner of the canvas.
The truth is, even if we stepped back and looked at the bigger picture it would still be a work in progress, brushes still applying the colours mixed in other’s minds, blended with the brushstrokes and colours mixed in the minds of those around them.
Those who are part of an event often fail to see it in its totality.
A painting has a single influence, its painter, while our lives are influenced by many. The events we experience are influenced by the brushstrokes of those around us whose brushstrokes are the results of the influence of those around them. Each individual brushstroke intersects other brushstrokes, the colours and textures mixing to create an event which in turn influences other events.
We may be able to step back far enough to see the adjacent brushstrokes and the colours and textures they create when mixed but the final picture is too grand to be completely viewed and, until Christ returns, remains incomplete.
There are so many influences in our lives but only one influence that influences all lives.
There is always something going on. We are too close to the picture to see it. This is why the truth is undefinable but the truth is still undeniable. God is the influencer of the past, the present and the future. Those brushstrokes, colours and textures that seem to be created as they are influenced by other brushstrokes, colours and textures are all influenced by the only one who knows what the final picture will look like.
God steps back far enough to see all of history and influences it, weaving it together to fulfill His perfect plan.
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. Proverbs 19:21 (NIV)