"[He] is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine."
This, for me, is a profound verse for today - results day. This is not just a verse for those who open that envelope and experience a rush of great victory. This is very much a promise for those who get hit by that deep, gut-wrenching sense of shock, horror and disappointment.
After the Olympic season many young people will be living with an increased awareness of the glorification of victors – the great joy of success and the great hollowness of loss. Whilst the Olympics has been amazing in encouraging sportsmanship, honouring one another and hard work it has also brought with it a reminder of the competitive, gold-is-best driving forces in our society.
Today there will be young people who are heartbroken at their results. Irrespective of what we might say about how brilliant they actually are and how their second choice is really a better uni, the reality is that, in that moment, hope can feel far away. Many will feel lost, adrift and hopeless at the prospect of that university place having slipped from their grip. Yet God says he is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine. However useless those results may seem, God can make out of them something beyond what that young person can ask or imagine. We may ask for great results but God can bring together three or four years of great adventure, challenge and hope in a forum different from where they’d imagined themselves.
The path we walk has no guarantee of smoothness or constant success. We are not promised a life of control, but we are promised hope. We are promised protective, provisional, enduring love that works all things together for our good – the best and the worst. We are called according to his purpose and his guidance will therefore lead us into a life lived to the full, irrespective of what may appear to stand in the way, and often using what appears to be failures to bring about amazing connections and opportunities.
Who do you know someone who is getting results today? Are you ready to rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn with those who mourn and remind them that God is able to do with what they hold in their hand, immeasurably more than all they can ask or imagine?