Valentine’s Day was this past weekend, and I hope we all had loving messages from folks we care for. But the sweetest words I ever read were not on a Hallmark card or a candy box. Not on a card tucked in among roses, but in my Bible. Just two words: “But God..”
I don’t think anyone can really get to know God without reading and rereading the Old Testament. That’s where we see what God actually SAID, and what He DID, and His very character is unfolded before us. Even the long lists of strange names and the big numbers serve to show us the magnitude and magnificence of His works! I know that I could never get to know God just through my own experiences. It would be too easy to substitute my wishes for His, and ascribe my opinions to Him. Too easy to pick the traits I love, and downplay the ones that are hard, like sure justice, and then to build myself a God who suits me.
And those words, “But God” show us, over and over, the times when God stepped in and changed the way things are going.
So often we seem to be like a toy train that goes too fast or hits another toy, and jumps the track. We need a big Hand which can reach down, remove the hindrance, set us back squarely on the track and get us going again in the right direction. And because we know that God never changes, we can be very sure that He is watching over us now just as He did then, and doing His “But God” thing to save us from who knows what! Sometimes in life we can look back and see how God intervened and did what only He could have done, but most of the time we are probably blissfully unaware.
That is our God, loving us. And the best “But God” of all, Ephesians 2:
“Once you were dead because of your many sins….. BUT GOD is so rich in mercy, and He loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, He gave us life when He raised Christ from the dead. It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!”
Surely the greatest manifestation of love in all of time, past, present and beyond!