When difficult circumstances come into our lives personally, or into our church corporately, it is easy to become distracted by the plight. Just as Peter, when he took his eyes off of the Lord, we focus instead upon the wind and waves and begin to sink beneath the waves. It is easy to lose sight of the ends to which He intends to bring us. I found an excerpt from one of Rutherford’s letters especially encouraging:
“We see God’s decrees when they bring forth their fruits, all actions, good and ill, sweet and sour, in their time; but we see not presently the after-birth of God’s decree, namely, His blessed end, and the good that He bringeth out of the womb of His holy and spotless counsel. We see His working, and we sorrow; the end of His counsel and working lieth hidden, and underneath the ground, and therefore we cannot believe. Even among men, we see hewn stones, timber, and an hundred scattered parcels and pieces of an house, all under-tools, hammers, and axes, and saws; yet the house, the beauty and use of so many lodgings and ease-rooms, we neither see nor understand for the present; these are but in the mind and head of the builder, as yet. We see red earth, unbroken clods, furrows, and stones; but we see not summer, lilies, roses, the beauty of a garden.”
We need to assure ourselves that though the way is difficult, and though the wind and waves beat upon us, still God is at work refining, building, planting. He will be present us a “glorious church”.