There are few things we dislike in life more than an unexpected event ruining a long-planned family holiday, or sometimes an unexpected hitch in public transport turning an ordinary day or journey into a nightmare. As a matter of fact, the bedrock assumption that underlies the entire world economic system is the Latin phrase ceteris paribus which means ‘all other things being equal.’ In recent memory, the unexpected COVID-19 pandemic upended the apple cart of the world economy and even that of our nation!
Thankfully, not all unexpected events are bad. How many times have you been surprised by the unexpected kindness of a stranger, or a work colleague who sensed that you were up to your eyeballs with tasks and took time to offer you some respite?
The unexpected can be something we all look forward to.
When three disciples of Jesus got one of the best shifts of the day; accompanying the Teacher to the mountain and catching their much-needed rest all night, while He prayed – they did not count on the unexpected!
After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him and led them up a high mountain, where they were all alone. There he was transfigured before them. His clothes became dazzling white, whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them. And there appeared before them Elijah and Moses, who were talking with Jesus. (Mark 9:2-4)
Their sleep was interrupted when they caught a glimpse of two men from the past: Moses and Elijah having a meeting with Jesus. That was strange enough and up there in the pick of the unexpected. However, the change in the appearance of Jesus tops every unexpected! It was an impact event that stayed with them throughout their lifetime (2 Peter 1:18, 1John 1:1-4). The transfiguration made their faith and trust in Jesus unwavering to the end.
As we journey through 2024, we can all cultivate the desire for the unexpected like that experienced by the three disciples of Jesus.
First and foremost, we need the company of Jesus. John 5:39 says, ‘These are the very Scriptures that testify about me…’ As we engage in thoughtful reading of scriptures and meditation, we often come away with an unexpected insight about the Lord Jesus and sometimes the events around our lives.
Secondly, time spent in prayer committing our care and worries into His Hands often gives rise to unexpected, pleasant surprises. I also believe that writing down those unexpected, pleasant surprises builds our faith and trust in Jesus.
I pray that in 2024, yours and your families’ lives will be filled with unexpected blessings from the Lord Jesus Himself.
Dotun Dosunmu is a Sycamore Tree Tutor and PF Local Group Leader.
Did you know you can receive the monthly devotional and Prayer Diary by email? Use this link to sign up.