SpaceX postponed its launch of two NASA astronauts into orbit yesterday afternoon because of stormy weather that included a tornado warning. The countdown had gone smoothly to that point but is now rescheduled for Saturday.
The mission would have represented the first time a company flew commercially developed hardware carrying humans and linking with the international space station. It would also have been the first space launch from US soil in nearly a decade.
Elon Musk, the billionaire who cofounded PayPal and was CEO of the electric car manufacturer Tesla, founded Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) in 2002. He is the CEO of SpaceX and the chief designer in building its rockets.
However, as events demonstrated yesterday, even Elon Musk is not more powerful than Mother Nature.
From test to testimony
Hurricane season is beginning. Even with the most advanced technology in history, experts cannot predict how many storms will strike us, or when, or where. Nor have we found a cure for the common cold, much less a vaccine for COVID-19 (so far). Nor can we predict what virus will create the next pandemic, or when it will strike.
None of these observations are intended to disparage human intellect and expertise. God calls us to love him “with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37) and wants us to use our mental capacities to their fullest.
But when nature disrupts the plans of one of the most famous entrepreneurs and engineers in the world, we do well to remember our impotence before our Creator’s omnipotence.
The psalmist proclaimed, “Great is our Lord, and abundant in power; his understanding is beyond measure” (Psalm 147:5). We can know that “the Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary” (Isaiah 40:28).
As a result, we can celebrate the fact that “nothing will be impossible with God” (Luke 1:37).
Now, let’s apply our Father’s omnipotence to our present circumstances. The psalmist declared: “Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in his ways!” (Psalm 128:1). Note the present tense, no matter what is happening in your life. And note that this promise is for “everyone” who fears God by walking in his ways, whatever our challenges may be today.
As a father and grandfather, I want nothing more than to bless my children and grandchildren. Our Father is the same. But he cannot bless disobedience since this would encourage that which harms us. Rather, our obedience positions us to experience the blessing our Father so passionately wants to give his children.
What do we do when he does not give us what we want? When he does not heal us or help us in the way we ask? Consider Max Lucado’s assurance: “God can make something good out of your mess. The test you’re experiencing will become your testimony.”
One way our Lord redeems what he allows is by using suffering to grow us spiritually. Lucado suggests: “Rather than say, ‘God, why?’ ask ‘God, what? What can I learn from this experience?’ Rather than ask God to change your circumstances, ask him to use your circumstances to change you.”
How will you pray about your challenges today?