Decisions, decisions. Life is full of them. From simple decisions between take-out and leftovers to weighty decisions surrounding careers, relationships and living situations, it’s easy to become overwhelmed.
Through some of life’s most difficult decisions, although I prayed for God’s direction, it seemed as if He didn’t hear my cries. At times I questioned whether He knew the stresses I endured and the choices I faced. How long must I wait for His answer? I wondered. Does He know what I need? Does He even care?
When I struggle and question if God knows my needs, He reminds me of the lesson He taught me one warm summer evening.
Falling into the backyard hammock for a well-deserved break following a vigorous workout, the nighttime breeze refreshed my body as the stars began to burst forth with vivid beauty. God painted a masterpiece besieged with gorgeous balls of blue, red, and white light.
As I lay before the glittering world of God’s creation, I marveled at the infinite universe. He reminded me of the prophet Isaiah’s words:
“Look up into the heavens. Who created all the stars? He brings them out like an army, one after another, calling each by its name. Because of his great power and incomparable strength, not a single one is missing. O Jacob, how can you say the Lord does not see your troubles?” (Isaiah 40:26-27 NLT).
While pondering this scripture I considered asking God to show me a shooting star. I hesitated, however, afraid He wouldn’t respond and therefore leave me disappointed. Because my doubt left no expectation, I never even asked. After all, I thought, He doesn’t really hear me when I talk to him. Certainly, more important issues top His “to do” list, not my childish desire for a shooting star, I reasoned.
Gazing at the heavens in wonder, a blazing light caught my eye. As a glittering star flashed across the sky it seemed as if God whispered, “I know what you need, I know what you’re thinking, and I know what you want – even before you ask for it.”
I grinned ear to ear as a rush of exhilaration washed over me. God had answered my prayer even though I hadn’t verbalized the request.
While facing a maze of decisions, you might wonder if God knows what you’re going through. Feeling alone, you may wonder whether He even cares. Despite our questions, He does know, and does care – far beyond human understanding.
God knows each star’s name, and knows every detail of each challenge we encounter. He knows our deepest feelings, frustrations, and needs. He designed a perfect, personalized plan for our lives. Our job is to trust Him as we walk out that plan.
As worries about the future try to cloak our hearts, we can remind ourselves that the details of our future are not our burden to bear. When thought provoking questions arise about which job to take, how to make ends meet, or how to address a particular challenge, our anguish must flee. God holds the answers to these questions in the palm of His hand and knows our future’s direction. If we walk with Him, He’ll be our personal guide, leading us step by step. Not only does He know what we need; He delights in supplying those needs as we trust in Him (Philippians 4:19).
If you’re stressed over difficult decisions, take time to gaze at the stars. As you stare into the glimmering lights remember that God does care. As you wait for His plan to unfold in your life, don’t forget to express the desires of your heart to God. Maybe He’ll throw you a shooting star – even if you forget to ask!
Copyright © 2011 Emily Marszalek, adapted from previous publication in Insight (3/12/2011).