“The mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the Lord's people. To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory."- Colossians 1:26-27
Last week Joanie called me while she was at the hospital with Mia to let me know that we missed something pretty important. She said, "You won't believe what happened earlier today that we missed?" My immediate thought was that we forgot to sign a form or that there was a positive test result to report on. Joanie went on to say that the actor who plays the current Spiderman showed up in full superhero outfit to meet the kids in the hospital. I cannot tell you how my wife and daughter felt, but I was pretty bummed out as Spidey is my absolute favorite superhero. I guess I will be okay over time.
It was this missed opportunity that reminded me of the amazing reality that God always stands by our side, desires to speak into our lives, and shows up in the most wonderful, powerful, and supernatural ways. As King David says in Psalm 16:8, "I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With Him at my right hand, I will not be shaken." This reminder stayed with me all through the weekend and into our Sunday Pre-Service Worship and Prayer time (Encounter Jesus- Sundays at 9 am). I kept on hearing the Holy Spirit speak this word, "You will not MISS it". The Lord wants us to know that we will not miss what His plans are and what His message is. The Lord is present to speak, to make known, to touch, and to deliver.
When we accepted Jesus as Savior, putting our faith in Him, we went from life being a MYSTERY to experiencing the MAJESTY of God. When a person comes to Christ they are no longer blind, no longer controlled by worldly principles and practices, and no longer attempting to do life on their own terms and in their own strength. The above Scripture speaks of each believer becoming a recipient of heaven's riches: A rich deposit of true wealth that fills each heart and satisfies each account. The Apostle Paul says it this way in Ephesians 1:3, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ." This deposit addresses every question, supplies every need, and overcomes every obstacle. Through the work of Christ within us we are no longer left to ourselves, no longer a mess, and no longer lost.
The world has many questions that feel like bestselling mystery novels which lead people through many twists and turns. But in faith we experience the unfailing love and great patience of God. The Lord of heaven does not want creation to MISS His Good News, His gift, and His Glory! What I love about the riches of the mystery of God's will and ways (as Paul speaks about) is that it does answer what I see as the three biggest question marks people have. Here are the three questions from mankind and the three resounding answers from the Lord:
#1 Does God even care about me?
This question is answered through the power of His LOVE. We must remember that the "mystery" Paul speaks has to do with the age of the Messiah coming into the world to deliver, redeem, and overcome. And what we know about Jesus' becoming flesh is that it had to do with God's heart for His people. John 3:16 tells us, "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." When the mystery was revealed in the person of Christ, so too did the love of the Father rain down on humanity.
#2 What happens when I die?
This may be the mother of all questions. For centuries people have tried to determine if there is a fountain of youth, a way to expand one's lifespan, and what takes place in the afterlife. Jesus' coming to the earth included His conquering of death. When Jesus rose from the grave, He not only walked out from the tomb, but unlocked each of us from the shackles of torment that death brings. This question is answered by the AUTHORITY of Christ. Hebrews 2:14-15 triumphantly proclaims, "Since the children have flesh and blood, He too shared in their humanity so that by His death he might break the power of Him who holds the power of death--that is, the devil--and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death."
#3 Does my life have a purpose?
Another amazing blessing that took place when the "mystery" of God's will was revealed in Jesus is that our purpose took form through His perfect plan. Just as Jesus called His very first disciples to follow Him, we are being called into a new dimension of life. Not only that, but Jesus' ascension into heaven and sending of the Holy Spirit provides the answer of HOPE. Jesus does have an eternal plan for His people which will be culminated at His return. Ephesians 1:13-14 encourages us, "And you were also included in Christ when you heard the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession--to the praise of His glory."