He reaps where He didn't sow

As I live in the tension of the shrug, one of the things I've wrestled with in the past few years is the promises of protection and provision in the Bible.

Because God-fearing Christians are still sick and injured and quite often left-without. So I just don't get it...

I mean... Why do we pray for the angels to have charge over us, when accidents still happen to angel-surrounded Believers all the time? I don't know. And I'm not trying to start a theological debate here... just voicing my questions. Or rather my lack of answers.

I've wondered about the whole "no weapon formed against you shall prosper" thing. Because I've had a lot of weapons formed against me. And a lot of weapons have succeeded.

I've endured literal fires, floods, droughts, breakdowns, tornadoes, infidelity, divorce, and the closure of our ministry... So I've wrestled with what it means that these weapons formed against me won't prosper, because they sure have seemed to...

The past few days as I've been pondering all this again, I had this thought:

Maybe it's not that the weapons formed against me won't succeed in hindering or destroying me... but that even if they do, they still won't bear fruit.

The weapons may stop me or thwart what I'm doing or even slay me, but that doesn't mean they will bear fruit in my life. Because God -- as only He can do -- reaches in and creates beauty from ashes, new life from death, joy from mourning.

God reaps even what He doesn't plant. No matter what, He ultimately reaps a harvest for my good and His glory even from the weapons formed against me.

Remember the parable of the talents? Towards the end of that jam-packed short story, the servant who had been given one talent -- and did nothing with it -- got angry at the Master, accusing him of "harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed." And the Master agreed.

Because that's exactly what He does.

God reaps where He didn't sow, and He gathers where He didn't scatter seed.

He can take a crop of thorns, and harvest a crop of wheat.

He can take all of our pain, and still harvest abundant joy out of it.

He reaps everything good from a planting of everything bad.

"Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy. They weep as they go to plant their seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest." Psalm 126:5-6

God never wastes a thing.

Not even the weapons that succeed against us.