“Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace.” (v16 from The Message)
Have you ever observed someone going through difficult times, an extremely stressful and chaotic period in their life but they don’t seem stressed out or unnerved? I have. And I often wonder how they are able to continue working, loving, enjoying themselves and praising God. I’m pretty sure these people do experience the difficulty of their situation and are, at times, weighed down by the pressures and problems. But they don’t give up; they continue to have faith and hope. Even in the midst of chaos, pain and confusion, they seem to be calm and at peace. And to the world, their calm and peace may seem incompatible with their circumstances.
I think what we observe is someone who has been changed by God – someone experiencing the “new life” they have received through God’s grace. God has promised to always be with us and He has promised He will provide incredibly great things for us. The source of their strength, calm, hope and even contentment is their faith and trust in God and His promises.
I believe these moments of calm and peace in the midst of turmoil are pleasing to God because He knows they are reflections of faith and trust in what we don’t yet see. And, He knows how difficult it can be for us to have that faith and trust.