His parents said to him, “Isn’t there a woman among the girls in the neighborhood of our people? Do you have to go get a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?” But Samson said to his father, “Get her for me. She’s the one I want—she’s the right one.(His father and mother had no idea that God was behind this, that he was seeking an opportunity against the Philistines. At the time the Philistines lorded it over Israel.)” Judges 14:3,4
So as I continue walking through Judges with the children of Israel, I come to the life of Samson. But what is this?! God is ‘seeking an opportunity’ in a fairly unconventional place, (dare I say, un-orthodox way), through a very vulnerable heart. The heart of a set-apart Nazarite, claimed by God from before birth. A heart attracted to … a Philistine! What an awkward situation for Samson’s parents. Heart-breaking. How would I view this if I were his mom? Based on the clear calling of Samson to be kept pure as a Nazarite, is there any way this could turn out well?
No doubt that God looks for opportunities in less-than-ideal ways. In hidden places, in hard places. In ways we just don’t see it, or understand it. There is no place that does not present itself as an occasion for Him to reach down and stir up the waters. There is no limit to His desire to creatively interact with His image-bearers, and to use us in mighty ways. There is no end to the degree He longs to provide us with an encounter, no boundary to the lengths He will go to reveal Himself so that we can experience deep relationship with Him.
One wonders if He might just be seeking out opportunities especially in challenging nooks, dark places, so-called gray areas so that He can bring light and life and victory there? Does Don’s sickness supply Him with such an opportunity? Hardships? Seriously, could there be there any place that is not an opportunity for His will to be done on earth as in heaven? Sickness or health, weakness or strength, highs and lows, everyday routines or out-of-the-ordinary ones. All are sacred opportunities.
During this Lent season, as I reflect on the journey of Christ to the cross, I observe others also seeking opportunities – opportunities to betray, lie against and kill Him. Satan himself is like a roaring lion, seeking opportunities to devour God’s people. Every day the same opportunities are present to either fall into the hands of the one who comes to kill, steal and destroy – or be used as a vessel in the Hand of the Living God for life and wholeness and display of His splendor. And we are allowed to have the choice by the attitude or focus we choose, complete with our vulnerabilities and weaknesses! What a privilege and entrustment, when so much weighs in the balance. When we get to Heaven we will see things so much differently!
My desire is to be so aware of the slightest breath of Your Spirit so that my heart is fertile ground providing You to make the most of the opportunity You look for. I join You in looking for opportunities as I walk through this day. Open my eyes, Lord, to see as You do. “For the eyes of Yahweh roam throughout the earth to show Himself strong for those whose hearts are completely His.” May I be counted among them! May Your searching eyes find a place in my life today. Today, as I open my mouth I want You to find an opportunity to display Your words of wisdom, life, hope, love and truth. I pray Ephesians 5:16 that I may “redeem the time” making a wise and sacred use of every opportunity for doing good, seizing every opportunity You provide, knowing there is more purpose than I can possibly see. All places are holy ground. All opportunities are offered to You to redeem for Your glory.