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Why Are We So Surprised?

April 9, 2014

As I gathered my things to prepare for our women’s group, I discovered my Bible was missing. I continued to search the desk, the bookshelf, my tote bags; no Bible.  Since I work in the church, there’s no shortage of Bibles around; but I wanted my Bible, the one with the keepsake notes stuck snugly between well-worn pages yellowed by highlighter.  Time was ticking.

The colorful binding on my Children’s Ministry Bible caught my eye.  Perfect, I’ll use this one; after all, we are called to have faith like a child, right?

Our study that night brought us to one of the most prophetic books in form; poetic and oh so relevant today.  Micah.  A short yet powerful message, seven chapters long, sandwiched between Jonah and Nahum.  The passage, Micah 6:6-8.

As we neared the end of our time together, an old sermon outline fell out of the pages of the Bible I had not originally planned to use that night.  I felt compelled to read aloud this outline, dated eight years earlier, October 29, 2006.

After reading down the front page of the outline, I flipped it over and continued reading. As my eyes continued down the page, my expression must have been priceless.  I gasped.  There it was again.  Micah 6:6-8. 

Why are we so surprised when God speaks loud and clear?

We’ve all used the phrase “that doesn’t surprise me,” when an occurrence lines up with character.  A conscientious student makes the honor roll; a person habitually late loses a job. So why would it surprise us when we hold faith tangibly in our hand, in the form of a sermon outline written almost eight years ago?  Doesn’t that divine occurrence line up with God’s character?  Sure it does. He speaks to His children today,  just as He did yesterday, and just as He will tomorrow.  Perhaps surprise is not the right word, but rather wonder, amazement, excitement, awe.  Confirmation is a powerful thing.

Don’t miss awestruck wonder while waiting for the sea to part. tweet that

So what was God saying loud and clear?  That He does not require from us empty ritual, but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with Him.

Our eyes could hear Him speak.

By the way, my Bible was at home, right where I was supposed to leave it.

With what shall I come before the Lord,
And bow myself before the High God?
Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings,
With calves a year old?
  Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams,
Ten thousand rivers of oil?
Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression,
The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?

He has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the Lord require of you
But to do justly,
To love mercy,
And to walk humbly with your God?

                                                        Micah 6:6-8 (NKJV)