Sometimes we get frustrated when we don’t see what God is doing. We know God is in control, and he’s on the throne. Yet, we still miss things and only see what God is doing after it’s done. Or maybe that’s just me. 

I don’t like surprises. Well, at least the bad kind. As someone who reads the Bible daily, prays, fasts, and spends time with the Lord, I try and live the best life I can in him. One thing I expect from being close to God is to know what’s coming and to see what he’s doing right now. After all, if I can’t see what God’s doing right now, then doesn’t that mean I’m not in tune with him?

The Apostles were close to Jesus, don’t you think? For three years, they lived with Jesus. They ate and slept together and had intimate teaching sessions with Jesus. Yet, despite being so close to Jesus, there were times when they didn’t know what he was doing. They either didn’t believe or understand it, or it was hidden from them. Within these three categories (not believing, understanding, or having it hidden), I think I have an answer as to why I don’t see things coming sometimes and why I don’t see what God is doing until after he’s done it. 

In John 2, when Jesus clears the Temple because there were “people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and others sitting at tables exchanging money” (John 2:14 NIV). Afterward, he was asked, “What sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?” (John 2:18 NIV), and Jesus gave them this response.

Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”

John 2:19 (NIV)

Out of everyone who heard Jesus’ response, no one but Jesus knew what he was talking about. We see evidence that his disciples didn’t understand nor believe what he said in this verse.

After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.

John 2:22 (NIV) 

We see something similar after Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem. 

At first his disciples did not understand all this. Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that these things had been written about him and that these things had been done to him.

John 12:16 (NIV)

In both cases, the disciples didn’t really get what Jesus was doing or what had happened until later. In one case, they didn’t believe, and in the other, they didn’t understand. 

Before Jesus was glorified, he told his disciples what would happen three times. However, in the second and third instances, the meaning behind what Jesus told them was hidden. 

But they did not understand what he meant and were afraid to ask him about it.

Mark 9:32 (NIV)

The disciples did not understand any of this. Its meaning was hidden from them, and they did not know what he was talking about.

Luke 18:34 (NIV)

In Mark 9:32, we see their response the second time Jesus predicts his death, and Luke 18:34 shows us the third time. I believe the meaning was hidden from the disciples because of what happened the first time Jesus predicted his death. 

He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns. (emphasis added)”

Mark 8:31-33 (NIV)

The first time Jesus told the Twelve what would happen to him, it disturbed Peter. It probably bothered all the disciples, but we only see Peter’s response. I think it was because of how the Twelve might respond later that understanding was hidden from them.

When I consider that the Twelve didn’t always get what was going on, I realize I’m not always going to know what’s going on either. I might not be mature enough to believe or understand it, or perhaps it’s hidden from me because I won’t respond well. While a lot passed over the Twelve disciples’ heads while they were with Jesus, this didn’t seem to dissuade them from following Jesus. Even when the teaching was difficult, they didn’t leave him. I think Peter said it best, “”Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God” (John 6:68-69 NIV). 

Overall, I’d say that not knowing everything God is doing or what’s going to happen ahead of time might be more what a life of faith looks like than knowing about everything and being prepared for it in advance. 

Do you know God? God knows you, and he loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, and he wants you to know him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so we could be free of guilt, freed from death, and live eternally with him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation:

Lord Jesus, forgive me for all my sins. I repent from my ways. Wash me in your blood and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I believe that you died on the cross, were buried, and on the third day, God the Father raised you from the dead. Right now, Lord Jesus, I open the door to my heart and receive you into my heart as my Lord and personal Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer, then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment, and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.