Life is tough and even tougher when answers escape us in the darkness of our circumstances and understanding. But, in a surprising twist of biblical reasoning, our limitations provide the means to cope with life’s trials and tribulations. Few truths of Scripture are more difficult to accept than our complete dependence on God for knowledge and truth, yet few are more important. Given the infinite excellence of God’s perfections and who we are in relationship to Him, humble acceptance of our limited perspective and knowledge is not only necessary and appropriate, it supplies the ground for a soul-soothing response to profound suffering and evil.
Faith in the face of great problems does not ultimately come from specific answers to every difficult question (though God has provided many specific answers in Scripture). If it did, we would need the infinite knowledge of God for a proper faith in every circumstance. Our perspective is often earthly and short-sighted, while we lack the comprehensive and eternal perspective from which to properly view all things. Our peace, however, comes not from knowing every solution for every problem and mystery, but from trust in the goodness and excellence of the One who does. In the perfect character of God lies our comfort and rest. Here, as elsewhere, we are strong when we are weak (2 Corinthians 12:10).
One of the more moving testimonies of our need to trust in God’s sovereign rule over our life comes from the experience of Corrie ten Boom. The narrator of the virtual tour of the Corrie ten Boom Museum tells the story of how Corrie, in her ministry after the war, would carry with her a piece of blue cloth to illustrate how Christians should view life’s difficulties . A survivor of the Ravensbruck concentration camp, Corrie knew difficulties. One side of the cloth displayed a delicate and beautiful embroidered image, while the backside revealed a chaotic jumble of different colored threads of no distinct pattern. In her talks with people she would hold up and show the backside of the cloth, giving the impression that she had held up the wrong side of the embroidery. She would then ask, “Does God always grant us what we ask for in prayer?” After a brief pause, answering, “Not always. Sometimes He says no. That is because God knows what we do not know. God knows all. Look at this piece of embroidery, the wrong side is chaos. But look at the beautiful picture on the other side, the right side.” Corrie would then turn the cloth over to reveal a skillfully embroidered crown, “symbolizing our crown of eternal life.” It was a beautiful image, made with threads of many different colors and overlaid with pearls. She would then quote the following poem:
My life is but a weaving, between my God and me,
I do not choose the colors, He worketh steadily,
Oft times He weaveth sorrow, and I in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper, and I the underside.
Not till the loom is silent, and shuttles cease to fly,
Will God unroll the canvas and explain the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful in the Weaver’s skillful hand,
As the threads of gold and silver in the pattern He has planned. 
Our past, present and future circumstances lie in God’s hands. With the Apostle Paul and our fellow saints in the present age, we can say with hope and assurance, “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Romans 8:18). All sorrow and suffering must be seen in light of the brevity of life and endless eternity, the excellence of Christ and the extent to which He went to remedy evil, God’s perfect wisdom in ordering our life and the world, and our profoundly limited human perspective. In God we trust as we look forward to the day when we will see our skillful Weaver face to face, when the “upper side” of His flawless purpose and plan is unfolded before us. Until then, God’s grace is sufficient, for we are strong when His “power is perfected” in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9, 10).
 The entire tour can be found at http://www.tenboom.com/en/. The particular account of the embroidered cloth told here is located in section #18 of the tour diagram.
 From Corrie ten Boom, Tramp for the Lord (Fort Washington, PA; Old Tappan, NJ: Christian Literature Crusade and Fleming H. Revell Company, 1974), 12. Credit is gratefully acknowledged to Grant Colfax Tullar for “My Life Is Like a Weaving.”
© 2015 Craig Biehl, Adapted from Craig Biehl, God the Reason: How Infinite Excellence Gives Unbreakable Faith, Carpenter’s Son Publishing, 2015.
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