Arsène knows and God knows!

This past week has been a challenging and interesting experience. We kicked of the nine weeks of learning about who we are in Christ by going on a retreat to a wonderful location in a forest out in the middle of nowhere. We are six interns doing these nine weeks together, and we have a group of 5-7 discipleship counselors that journey with us as we get to know more about what it looks like when Christ lives his life through us, and how we can help other people see these wonderful and life changing truths.

For me this week was the beginning of what I titled heavenly CPR. It really did feel like my heart had grown cold and semi-dead, and I was in desperate need of God to start waking up my heart again. And God is the master surgeon. He knows what I need, when I need it, and how he needs to get to me. During the first few days I really got in touch with some heavy emotions. Many tears were cried, many questions to God were raised, and I did come to the point of thinking: “why don’t I just run away from this, this is too hard, and it’s not gonna help anything anyway”. But I know that I know that I know that I know that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life, and with Peter I just have to cry out: “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God” (John 6:68).

And I know that God knows how to get to my heart and clear out the lies that I’ve been believing about him, about myself and about other people. God is clever and patient. He knows we can’t handle everything all at once, so he takes on a journey with him. It’s a process where God wants to bring further healing to places that have hurt us. It does hurt. Make no mistake, but it’s still good. And it’s still God answering my prayer asking him to experience life in him. Life with him may not be easy, but it’s good and fulfilling.

Someone might wonder why there is a picture of a somewhat stern looking gentleman accompanying this post. And I will try to explain what the relevance of Mr. Arsène Wenger is to this post. Arsenal Football Club is one of England’s and Europe’s biggest football (soccer that is) clubs. Wenger is known to be fairly unique among the top managers in England. He is known to hardly ever spend the big sums of money that all the other top clubs spend on players. Instead Wenger prefers to find random, well-hidden, talented youngsters all over Europe and in Africa and groom them into top class players over time. Before each season Wenger is accused of not buying the needed players, but among us Arsenal fans a saying has developed over the last many years. It’s two simple words: “Arsène knows“. With those few words all confidence is put in Wenger’s abilities to make the team both play beautiful football, but also to succeed and finally win some trophies.

God used those two words to speak to me Thursday evening, when I was lying in bed pondering what I should be talking about on Friday where we were all supposed to share something about what God had been doing in us throughout the week. I was tired, frustrated, angry and lonely, and God spoke to me through something as trivial as a manager of a football club – he’s got a good sense of humor, God, and he knows how to get to all of us, also an Arsenal fan 🙂

God gently reminded me that he knows. God knows. God knows best. God knows what I want. He knows I want more life in him. He knows I’m not satisfied with crumbs from the table. I want it all. I want life, peace, security in Christ. I want Christ to live his life through me and change the world one person at a time through me. Not because of me or because of who I am, but because I surrender to Christ and allow him to live his life through me.

God knows. He really does know best. And even though I left the week with many questions and much confusion in my heart, I also left it with a sense of peace knowing that God knows. He knows me. He knows how he can best transform me more into what he wants me to be. So I surrender to him. I surrender to his wisdom and knowledge. I surrender to the fact that he is in control, even when I don’t see it or feel it.

God is good, and God knows what I need these next seven weeks of intense discipleship training.

Blessings, Torben – who hopes that the reader understands that even though I do admire Arsène Wenger, I’m not in any way comparing him with God! Wenger was just the means that God used to speak to me this week 🙂

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