God's Will Is Always Best
Nina Vanska | 2016 August Voice of Zion
God’s Will Is Always Best
During good times, the works of God are easy to appreciate. We feel the warmth of His embracing arms and the blessings in the small things in life. The baby’s slumber, a message from a friend, or a stroll in the park on a summer day bring smiles to our face. We may begin to feel that these beautiful moments are just what we wanted, and even forget where the blessings come from. After difficult times, it may be easier to remember to send a sigh of thankfulness to our Heavenly Father.
In the natural world that God created, the wind, hail, and cloudy days roll in unexpectedly, and often unwelcomed. But just as the balance in nature is built upon the variation of day and night, cold and warm, sun and rain, so has God seen fit that His children experience the varying conditions. Is it easy for us to accept this? We didn’t plan for all these babies, for unemployment, for mental illnesses, or for the house burning down! We didn’t want to feel lonesome or having to face a tragic accident! We feel the frustration of not being in control. To where do we turn: anger, bitterness, human wisdom; or humbleness and acceptance of God’s plan?
God has given much wisdom, the tools and technology for man to be in control of many aspects of his life: there are monitors that warn us, apps that predict, and automated controls that react to this and that. Many forms of ease and relief in daily life are brought through “human” wisdom. But the enemy of the soul has been busy in his lab as well, twisting our minds, creating links to questionable sites and sinful solutions to situations whenever we find our life is not under our control. He arranges tempting, misery-relieving shortcuts that lead us off the narrow way.
When we’re confused or tired, another path seems easier to travel—it looks smoother, the solutions are readily available, and life is simply more fun. The narrow way to heaven that sometimes winds through rough terrain may not look attractive. The wrong way goes unexpectedly down a slippery slope into darkness, whereas the narrow way leads to a light we cannot always readily see. It is so human to look to the seemingly easier way! Yet we see so vividly in our life the blessings of traveling on the way that God shows us. How many times have we felt afterwards how God has blessed us with trials; He has brought us closer to him, shown us His love through escorts who have helped us, and left us thanking Him and His Almighty hand for leading us on His way.
1. Share experiences and thoughts from a time in your life when you felt that God especially gave you strength to trust in His will. How did this help you? Can trials also be a blessing?
2. What does God’s Word from Proverbs 3:5,6 mean to you? “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”
3. Sing and visit about song of Zion #357, “The Will of God Is Always Best.” What does this song mean to you personally? Has there been a time in your life when these words have had special meaning?
4. Write a poem or story, or draw a picture about a trial and/or blessing in your life.
Trust in God
In the following writings, children of God in various situations in life relate about the way God has led them and how friends and escorts have supported them in accepting God’s will, which ultimately is always best for us. Toronto area believers Nina Vanska and Mary Hotari did the interviews and provided the writings for this Home and Family feature.
God Allowed It to Happen
You girls, Veronica and Olivia, were in a serious collision recently. What happened?
V: We were coming from Easter services in our van. Mom was driving, with Kai (17), Jonas (9), Greta (8), and us two in the ride. We T-boned a smaller car that came through a stop sign. We were driving according to the speed limit, but we couldn’t stop in time. So we hit the car, and our van spun around into the ditch. The other car went off the road too.
Everything happened very fast, so maybe you didn’t have time to think of anything when it took place, but what were your first thoughts after the crash?
V: I was looking at my mom’s phone, but I noticed the car coming in front of us and knew we couldn’t avoid hitting it. I was worried about mom’s phone. After the crash I was in shock: my heart was racing, and my hip hurt, too.
O: I was looking at a calendar, then the crash happened. I didn’t see the car coming. Suddenly, I noticed I was bleeding. The bad smell from the airbags really made me feel confused. I saw the farmer’s field, but nothing really other than that at first. Then I saw the red car.
At some point you heard that the young woman in the car had died. What did you think?
V: Olivia, Kai, and I were taken to the hospital. Before we went into the ambulance, we heard that the driver of the other car had died. I was thankful to be alive. I was thankful to be a believer, because I thought of what would have happened if I had not been believing.
God allowed this to happen.
Why do you think this had to happen?
V: It was meant to happen so we could learn something from it. I realized that anything like this can happen to anyone
at any time.
O: And it was meant to happen right at that time. I can feel thankful for many things now.
Do you have any other thoughts about the crash?
V: Anyone’s time to go can come any time. It’s sad that it was that lady’s time to die.
God Leads Everything Best
What kind of lot has God given you, Riikka?
I am a single 37-year-old woman who lives alone in an apartment, in Lappeenranta, Finland. I was born in this town, and I have two sisters and two brothers with families of their own. After comprehensive school I went to Reisjärvi Opisto, where I was a student in the special education program. After this I went back to school to study, and am working in the student restaurant of the University of Lappeenranta. I do dishes and other tasks, wherever I’m needed.
How have God’s blessings been evident in your life?
I am happy to have a believing home, friends, and a job I enjoy.
Which matters have been difficult or hard to accept as God’s will?
All of the wishes I have made have not come true. I can still trust that God leads everything best.
Amid trials, what has been the role of friends and close ones?
I have always been able to discuss matters openly.
How can you help others?
I really enjoy helping families. I like to help whenever I can in local believing families, and also in the family in which I have a godson in Canada.
God Gives Acceptance and Peace
Andrew and Riitta Hotari share thoughts on the following questions:
In your experience as a family what has been God’s will for your life thus far?
God has given us a warm and loving family. With great joy, we’ve been blessed with circumstances that have allowed both of us to spend lots of time with our two daughters. Through experiences with babies that have passed away as soon as they entered this world, we have learned to cherish the living children that God has blessed us with. God is indeed the Lord of life and death. We’ve experienced how He can take children away from this life in ways that are difficult to understand. Sometimes earthly mothers bear heavenly children.
Has the acceptance of children been easy or difficult for you?
Accepting children has been easy for us. We can’t wait for the next one if God would so bless! We both come from large families and it seems natural that this would be our way as well. The difficulty and trial has been that this has not been the case for us thus far. Some have large families, some have small families, and some are not even blessed with children. We desire to learn to accept His will in our life.
Where have you received support for the experiences that you have gone through?
We’ve been amazed at the love, care, and support that we’ve received from not only our families, but all those who reside in His kingdom. God has given us a kingdom full of warm hearts and helping hands! In times of difficulty He has shown us that there is no better place to be than in the middle of His precious flock.
Do you have additional thoughts regarding accepting God’s will in your life?
Our lives don’t always go the way we had hoped. Sometimes life’s trials can seem insurmountable, and sometimes we have questions that have no answers. When we remain in His kingdom, He gives us refuge. When we’re obedient to His will, He gives strength. When we live of His gospel, He gives peace, joy, and hope. As long as God remains with us, we will have a glorious future regardless of what this life brings!
God Keeps Us in His Care
Timo and Minna Hotari also share thoughts on family life:
God has blessed us with a beautiful, healthy family. We started receiving these little gifts from heaven at the beginning of our marriage. We enjoyed the little ones. Life was really busy. Every child brought much joy and happiness.
We thought we were going to have more children, but God had a different plan. When mom almost died, we found that our seventh child was to be our last. Through our many fears and worries God willed that mom was able to come home. Through these experiences, we found comfort and support in God’s Word. We found that even through weak prayers and sighs, God always sends travel companions to comfort, uplift, and encourage. We are thankful how He has blessed us and kept us in His care.
We have learned that time flies and little ones grow quickly. We want to encourage others, too, to enjoy life with your children. Love them, care for them, and discipline them. Above all, root them in faith. Take them to the hearing of God’s Word and bless them with the gospel.