There’s an old Chinese parable about a farmer whose horse runs away. Upon hearing the news, a neighbor comes over and says, “Your horse ran away, what bad luck!” The farmer says, “Maybe yes, maybe no. We shall see.”
The next day, the horse returns with two more horses, so the neighbor comes over and says, “You now have three horses, what good luck!” The farmer replies, “Maybe yes, maybe no. We shall see.”
While the farmer’s son is out taming the horses, he falls and breaks his leg. The neighbor comes over to say what miserable luck this is, but the farmer says, as always, “We shall see.”
A few days later a war breaks out, and soldiers come through the town looking for young men. Because the farmer’s son is injured, he can stay home. Good luck? And so the parable continues with more episodes for the neighbor to judge good or bad, but always with the farmer saying, “We shall see.”
When we’re walking with God, praying about our choices and asking Him to search our heart and show us the way, we can find peace in knowing there’s a plan for our life. It may go beyond what we can see or comprehend at present, but surrendering to God (“let go and let God”) opens doors to life, not mere existence.
Going By Faith Means Trusting in God’s Wisdom
That parable makes me think about what it means to go by faith and trust in God. We don’t always know the why or how.
We don’t know how God will use our daily circumstances, our actions and our chance encounters to grow our faith, to grow faith in others and to grow His kingdom in general.
What may seem like unfortunate events today may carry a greater purpose tomorrow. What may seem like hard choices now may build an example of integrity and respect later. Gains in the wrong way could actually be losses; losses in the right way could actually be gains. But that’s when we trust God’s plan for our life.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)