Are you in the middle of a hard season? Does it feel like you’re living with circumstances that have moved in, unpacked, and have no plans to leave?
Take a moment to breathe.
Now take a moment to remember the best day you’ve ever had.
Now take a moment to remember the worst day you’ve ever had.
Now breathe again.
The best day of your life and the worst day of your life have something significant in common.
You can’t go back and change either one of them.
You can’t go back and make your best day better. You can’t go back and add an Acura to the birthday BMW. You can’t go back for one more blue water scuba dive in Grand Cayman. You can’t get ten more minutes backstage with the band. And you can’t order one more piece of Black Forest Cake while on holiday in the Black Forest.
What’s done is done.
You can’t go back and make your worst day worse. You can’t go back and break both legs instead of one. You can’t go back and total your car on the same day you got down-sized out of your job. You can’t go back and lose your best friend on the same day you lost a parent. You can’t go back and add more tears to the gallons you’ve already cried.
What’s done is done. Put simply, it is what it is.
It is what it is. If we leave it there, it’s a cold pragmatic fact. A hard, square cornered truth that leaves nothing but a righteous bruise when bumping into it.
The divorce is done. It is what it is.
The diagnosis is a degenerative disease. It is what it is.
The downsizing is dumping you out of your department. It is what it is.
It’s the medicine without the sugar. The drill without the Novocaine.
It is what it is.
None of us like the “it” when the “it” is painful. We know the healthy approach is to face reality. To make wise decisions, no matter how difficult. Yet often we don’t. We choose instead to ignore, stuff, or pretend away the pain. Self-medication comes in many forms. Alcohol, drugs, porn, food, over work, ill-advised relationships. It’s our way of ignoring “it is what it is”.
Living in La-La Land is delusional. And dangerous. More so the longer we live there. Much healthier is to acknowledge in our circumstance, “it is what it is”.
Were that it stopped there, were that the sum total of our experience, we’d be relegated to a life of cold realism. Yet there’s more to “it is what it is”. A terribly significant and redeeming truth of God. A truth every bit as real and important.
It is what it is . . .
. . . and what it is. . .
. . . is more than we can see.
It is what it is. And what it is, is more than we can see.
Because God is sovereign, which is to say He is large and in charge of His universe, it means that every circumstance that reaches us has first passed through His hand. Everything that happens to us God either causes or allows. There are no other options.
Our human tendency is to fixate on the questions, “Did God cause it? Or allow it?” We want Him never to cause bad things and always allow good things.
Yet our focus is misplaced. Better that we focus on God’s sovereignty. Better that we say, “God, I’m glad there’s more to this than what I can see.”
In Isaiah 55, God reminds us that in the same way the heavens are higher than the earth, His ways are higher than our ways. He has plans for us we don’t yet see. Plans that God will unfold in His time.
Further, Romans 8:28 teaches, “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good, to those that love Him and are called according to His purpose.” The reason we are able to accept reality in any situation is because we know there’s more to it than what we can see. We know our loving God has higher plans and purposes. Always for our good and always for His glory.
What’s your reality today? What circumstance are you looking at saying, “It is what it is.” ?
Yes. It is what it is. And what it is, is more than you can see.
Trust God for His plan and purpose. He promises to work it all for your good and His glory.
Todd A. Thompson – One Eye Out