Look what I have done
“You who are far away, hear what I have done; you who are near, acknowledge my power!” NIV
One of the reasons we struggle in our faith walk is that we don’t seem to be too aware of how this God we serve has moved throughout history. We have read about the parting of the Red Sea and the walls of Jericho. We have heard that Jesus healed the sick and that He stilled the storm with but a word.
After that we don’t seem to know too much of what He did and has been doing. Perhaps because of our busy schedules, we don’t really take the time to read about how God worked in the lives of those who came after the apostles, how He has been moving across the centuries since.
We are too narrowly focused. We are missing the big picture. And we are missing out on the ‘Living Book of Acts,’ the continuing acts of the Holy Spirit in the lives of believers. The Book of Acts is in like an open-ended book with each believer in each new generation adding another paragraph or chapter as the Holy Spirit works in and through the believers.
Why is it important to know and understand how the Lord has been at work throughout history as He is at work today?
Because daily we are bombarded by doubt and unbelief. It is everywhere – on television, in the newspapers, on the lips of our friends and neighbours. The message is simple: God doesn’t exist or God doesn’t work like that anymore or God doesn’t care or the Bible is not meant to be taken literally and so on.
In the face of this ungodly wave of doubt and unbelief, our faith is assaulted and put on the defensive. Over time, if we are not careful, it can weaken. If faith comes by hearing (Romans 10:17) you can be sure that doubt and unbelief also comes the same way.
That is why the Lord was so anxious for the people of Israel not to forget what He had done when He brought them out of Egypt. He kept telling them to remind themselves about it, pass on what they had seen and heard to their children and grandchildren when they sat around their campfires at night, when they sat down for their meals and whenever they gathered together. The traditional Passover Seder is all about the retelling of the story of how the Lord delivered them from the hand of Pharaoh.
You see, forgetfulness of what God has done brings doubt and wavering while remembrance brings faith and hope. In times of trial and trouble, it helps to remember what God has done before because it gives us faith to believe. He wants us to discover His workings and search for His footprints. He wants us to store memories of His faithfulness in our hearts so that in the day of trouble, we can have confidence and trust in Him.
“Build yourselves up in your most holy faith,” Jude urged (Jude 20-21).
You know as I have gone in search of what God has done, how He has moved among the nations and how He has touched the lives of ordinary men and women, I get so inspired and encouraged. I discovered that many of the people we now called “great” were just like us – with similar weaknesses, situations, desires, challenges and trials, etc. They cried out to God in their time of need and desperation and He answered them in amazing ways. He fulfilled their hopes and answered their dreams, and their lives were forever changed.
I have discovered that one believing man or woman was enough to bring down the glory of God. In 1857, in New York harbour, on the battleship USS North Carolina, revival broke out when four sailors gathered to pray…soon dozens of sailors were crying out for salvation…the battleship became a veritable House of God!
In India in 1905, a woman named Pandita Ramabai ushered in the glory of God in a place called Mukti. In China in 1927, a man named John Sung brought the Book of Acts alive when people started getting healed and the lame started walking at his prayer meetings. In Indonesia in 1965, people started getting healed and delivered when a revival broke out there. In Uganda the President and the nation entered into a covenant relationship with the Lord on the eve of the millennium… thousands are being saved.
And there are literally hundreds of such accounts of the things this mighty God has done, and is doing, all over the world.
I have read personal testimonies about miraculous healings, mighty provision, amazing deliverances, of battles won and mountains climbed, of victory snatched from the jaws of defeat, of men and women who stood alone against impossible odds and prevailed because God was with them.
Through these things I have seen the amazing footprints that my God has left behind all around me and I know that He is still at work. I care not what others may say about this God I serve because my heart remembers. I have seen His footprints in the sand and I know He is here!
And amid the daily challenges of life, I hear His voice saying: “Look what I have done among the nations!”