Now vs. Later
“You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” (John 13:7)
Among many wonderful truths and messages that have come from the Last Supper, one stands out for me that is a continual source of comfort and hope. Before the meal was over, Jesus stood up, poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciple’s feet and then dried them with a towel that was around His waist. The disciples, I’m sure, were a bit perplexed by this but yet, seemed to know that there must be a lesson in this somewhere and were patient as their feet were washed. But when it was Peter’s turn, he could not be acceptingly silent and asked if Jesus was going to wash his feet… with a refusal already on the tip of his tongue. Jesus replied to Peter in a way that would not only direct Peter to a higher truth, but also provide hope, trust and faith for thousands of questions in the thousands of years to follow. Jesus said, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand”!
In other words, our amazing Savior was saying that you are not going to understand many of the things that I am doing. Some things will be clear to you, as revealed by the Holy Spirit, and other things will not be clear. We may have many questions as to why this happened or that happened. We may have, as many questions about why this did not happen or that did not happen. He says that we are not going to understand everything that happens nor have things explained to us as to His motives, reasons, and objectives. He is God and He is Sovereign! Yet in those times, He wants us to trust Him without wavering or doubting or walking away from Him or getting mad at Him because something happened that we did not want to happen! In those times, we have to remember that He loves us… He is good… His thoughts and ways are not our thoughts and ways… He has an eternal purpose for everything and everyone… and that we simply have to trust Him with all of our hearts. Sometimes all we can do is to trust Him when everything else fades away.
But Jesus also told Peter that night that “… later you will understand”. What beautiful words of hope and comfort that brings into our lives the peace of Christ. We may not know now the answer to many questions we may have as to why this and why that. If He wants us to know, he will reveal it to us. But, He says that there will come a time and there will came a place when you will know… you will eventually understand and all things will be revealed to you. I believe that we will have some of that revelation here on this side of eternity, but I also believe that all things will be revealed in His holy presence in glory!
Since my beautiful wife, JoAnn, went home to be in the Lord some years ago (of which I have not yet caught my breath)… I have not yet asked why? (That’s just me!) If our Lord wants me to know why then He can surely do so. But until then, I trust Him… because I love Him… and because I know He loves me… and I know Him. He’s been faithful. He’s my rock!
So if you do not have answers to some questions that arise from some of the circumstances and situations of your life right now… or if you don’t understand or know the reasons why certain things happen in your life… trust that you will later in the proper time according to His perfect will. Until then, you have a Father who loves you and knows what is best for you. Trust that and rest in that. Have faith in God! Go forward! It’s ok!