Eager and excited to arrive in a remote town where our mission team would help local Christians, we heard the word no one wants to hear when they are traveling: delayed. The hours rolled by as we waited in the airport with little information other than our plane was being serviced due to technical problems. We were eager to arrive at our destination and ready to begin work, but being stuck in a small airport in the middle of nowhere, it felt like we were wasting precious time.
Up One's Sleeve
Have you ever heard the expression to have something "up your sleeve?” The idea is something is hidden, in one's sleeve, as it were. It cannot be seen, but will be revealed in due time. It may be a surprise, a trick, a strategy, or any number of things. Whatever it may be, it is hidden from plain sight. The saying may come from the world of circus magicians, who roll up their sleeves to show the audience they have nothing there before doing a trick.
We know God is Omniscient (all knowing), Omnipotent (all powerful), and Omnipresent (always present). However, I have a friend who suggests God is also “Omni-Sleeved.” This means God always has something "up His sleeve." In other words, God is so wonderful, powerful, wise, and loving, that He always has something more than we can see at any given time. No matter what the circumstances may be, God has more planned than we are able to perceive.
As it turned out, that is exactly what happened on our mission trip. A young boy had fallen from a significant height an hour or so before our plane arrived, and had sustained a severe head injury. There was no medical assistance for him in town, and the only chance for his survival was to be flown to a hospital in a larger city. Had our small plane been on time, it would have departed for the return flight long before the boy had his accident. With the next flight a day or two later, the boy surely would have died from his wounds.
While waiting for the plane to be repaired, all we could see was the inconvenience of a delay. Little did we know a boy’s life was actually hinging on the late arrival of our plane. The sovereign God of the universe, our Heavenly Father, was truly wearing “omni-sleeves” that day. He had something up His sleeve we could not see at the time.
We may not always understand what God is up to, but that's why it is good to remember God is an “Omni-God” at all times, especially during those difficult moments when we don’t understand what He is doing. Our Heavenly Father is all-knowing, all-powerful, and always present. In fact, He even has “omni-sleeves!”
Are you going through delays in your life now? May God have something “up His omni-sleeves” even now?
by Jimmy Aycock