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Turn My Outside Inside  

Ava's head plopped low. Exhaling, she gave off a sigh full of as much frustration as a five-year-old can muster. She'd tried putting on her puffy winter coat all by herself. Instead, she'd managed to ball it up in a pretzel. That's when her sweet voice intoned, “Can you turn my outside inside?”

If only fixing adult problems was as easy. Within the last 24 hours, my wife and I have been made aware of:

  • A three-year-old who has just been diagnosed with a severe brain tumor.
  • A couple who wonders if the family's mother will survive cancer that has taken a deadly twist.
  • Missionary friends who are urged to flee Ukraine immediately with only the (literal) clothes on their backs because of an anticipated Russian invasion.

Every single one of these families now wonders how life got so twisted so quickly. But because they're believers, in their own way, they're also asking the Lord, "Can you please turn my outside inside?"

How will their stories turn out? We know how we’d write the script, given a chance. But God is the Author of life. Still, it feels like all that’s left to us is prayer and an agonizing appointment in the waiting room of life.

But as we pray and wait, it’s good to hear an ancient reminder from our most reliable Friend. In Isaiah 30:18, God assures every one of us with lives that are balled up into a pretzel, “Therefore the LORD longs to be gracious to you, and therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you.”

Which means we can come to Him. Lean on Him. Cry on Him. So, gather your courage, find your voice—if only a whisper—and just say, “Can you turn my outside inside?” Spoiler Alert: He can. Even if the ending turns out differently than we expect.

Therefore, the LORD longs to be gracious to you, and therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you. For the LORD is a God of justice; how blessed are all those who long for Him.

-Isaiah 30:18

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Jon GaugerJon Gauger

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