Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

by | Jul 13, 2021 | Battles, Faith | 16 comments

Randy Alcorn once said, “The faith that can’t be shaken is the faith that has been shaken.” Have circumstances ever shaken your faith? I’m sure watching Jesus’ crucifixion shook the disciples to their toes.

After three years of witnessing Jesus’ miracles, they couldn’t understand His declaration that He was about to leave them. And how could darkness reign while He was still with them?

Mark 14-15 records Christ’s last hours. Watching Jesus suffer through false accusations, illegal trials, floggings, beatings, being spat upon, mocked, heaped with insults, and finally being nailed to a cross shook them these men who’d left everything to follow Him.

They listened in disgust as some feigned a desire to believe. “If He’d only come down from the cross. He saved others but can’t save Himself!”

They knew He could come down from the cross. Why didn’t He?

Appearances Can Shake Our Faith

From all appearances God had lost control. Why would He let Jesus, the second person of the Trinity, the Father’s One and only Son, suffer such mistreatment? If God couldn’t save Jesus, how can we trust Him to care for us?

Standing at the cross, the disciples watched Jesus’ agony. Suddenly, He cried out in a loud voice, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” His head slumped. He was gone. The One they’d trusted was dead. How could this happen?

Bystanders murmured, “Poor fool—He believed God would rescue him.” Jesus’ own words seemed to indicate total defeat. From all appearances living by faith was foolish.

However, if we had been there and drawn those conclusions, we would have been wrong. The story wasn’t over. It was actually beginning a new chapter. The next verse says,

The curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom” (Mark 15:38).

What appeared to be God abandoning His Son was Christ crushing the head of Satan and opening the doors to heaven.

The temple curtain separated the holy place from the Holy of Holies. Only the high priest could enter this sacred chamber and only once a year. Sinful humans could not stand in God’s presence and live. Jesus’ broken body paid for our sins and provided direct access to the throne of God.

What appeared to be the worst moment in history proved to be the highest, holiest, and best moment in time. What appeared to be God forsaking His Son was God in Christ, “reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them” (2 Cor. 5:19 NLT).


The cross looked like evil won. Instead, Jesus endured the cross to conquer Satan and death for us (Heb. 2:14-15). God was not preoccupied. He was accomplishing the plan He’d set forth since the beginning of time to secure your future and hope.

In life there will be times it looks foolish to hold on to hope. The faithless will point and jeer “Where is your God now?” We may be tempted to wonder where He is too. But the story’s not over. Remember the cross.

I have a plaque that reads, “Trust the next chapter because you know the author.” The cross reminds us, things aren’t always as they seem.

In life there will be times it looks foolish to hold on to hope. But we can trust the next chapter because we know the author. Share on X

Register Now!

I invite you to join us next Thursday evening on July 22, 2021, at 7 p.m. EST, to hear Brian and Denita Thomas talk about a Christian worldview in light of such issues as Critical Race Theory and BLM. This free seminar will meet on Zoom.

Navigating today’s culture can be challenging and confusing. There is much fear and division. How do we manage these issues and ideologies? The answer lies in developing a Biblical worldview.

Brian and Denita Thomas, founders of God 1st Bible Fellowship, will share information through a biblical lens. They will also empower us with scripture (the sword of the Spirit) to help us be vigilant and stand firm on Biblical principles.

If you’d like to attend this meeting, please contact me to save your spot. You are welcome to invite a friend. Brian and Denita will share for about 35 minutes. Then we will open it up for Q & A.

Click here to comment.


Photo by Siora Photography on Unsplash

Sometimes I link with these great sites:

#InspireMeMonday, #InstaEncouraements, #TellHisStory  #Recharge Wednesday, #Grace&Truth,

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  1. Michele Morin

    It’s so true that at times we cannot draw a hopeful conclusion from the evidence our eyes are gathering. But, as you have said so well, we know the story’s author!

    • Debbie Wilson

      Michele, remembering our story’s author makes all the difference when life is messy. So good to hear from you.

  2. Ann J Musico

    Again, Debbie, such a timely and relevant post to where we are in the world we live in right now. Thank you for the encouraging reminder.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Thank you, Ann!

  3. J.D. Wininger

    Great post Ms. Debbie. So glad we’ve been able to read the end, and we know what’s coming. The challenge is enduring to that end. God’s blessings ma’am.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Yes it is, J. D. May we finish well. Look up!

  4. Barbara Latta

    The world cannot see the reason Jesus died. 1 Corinthians 3:19 tells us that God’s wisdom is foolishness to the world. He didn’t die because they took Him, He died because He willingly gave Himself up for us. Thanks, Debbie, for sharing this.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Barbara, I’m thankful we live on this side of the cross. Thanks for sharing 1 Cor. 3:19 which perfectly sums up God’s plan.

  5. Tammy Kennington

    Hi Debbie.

    Worldview–and, ultimately, our Christview–determines our hope. Loved this post and I’m so excited that you’re hosting a seminar. May He bless it abundantly!

    Peace and grace,

    • Debbie Wilson

      Thank you, Tammy. God bless!

  6. Horace Williams Jr.

    What an important reminder to remember that the story does not end at the cross, Debbie. Beautifully written. Well done. We can live victoriously because of all that Christ has done. He is our hope!

    • Debbie Wilson

      So good to hear from you, Horace. Yes, the best is yet to come! What a savior!

  7. Ashley Rowland | HISsparrowBlog

    This is a great and necessary reminder for me at the moment. Appearances are not always true. The story isn’t finished.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Ashley, I think we all need that reminder from time to time. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Lisa notes

    “Appearances can shake our faith” – yes, that is so true. I’m trying to relinquish control of a situation right now that gives the appearance of abysmal failure. But I know God is working underneath what I see. I need to believe God is bigger than my circumstances.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Lisa, I love Paul’s scripture that reminds us that what we see is passing away. May God grant us eyes of faith to focus on His invisible, eternal work.

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