Just this week I read an illustration by Dr. Tony Evans. It made me think about our attitudes toward God. I share it with you now. Dr. Evans said that a football coach, if he believes the referee made a wrong call, will toss out a red flag. The coach believes the referee got it wrong and wants a review. The red flag means the referee must reconsider. He must look at the playback to determine if the call was valid or incorrect. Dr. Evans was reminding us that we, too, at times, behave like the coach before God.
After reading that illustration, I had to admit before my Heavenly Father that I have, at times, tossed out the red flag. I have wanted Him to reconsider telling me “no,” or “wait.” I was certain I could convince God that my idea was such a good one, that He would reconsider for sure. Have any of you ever had a red flag moment?
Perhaps we are going through some difficulty. We pray, pleading with God to take it away, but the difficulty doesn’t budge. Maybe we have asked in total belief that God would bring something about, but it never happens in the manner we had hoped. We can’t believe what we are experiencing in our lives. Why, God surely got this one wrong, we tell ourselves. He needs to rethink. He hasn’t paid proper attention to our prayers. In daring accusation we throw out the red flag, demanding God review our situation and recall the play in our perceived favor.
In those red flag moments, we are forgetting something of utmost importance. It’s an attitude found in Romans 8:32, “Since He did not spare even His own Son but gave Him up for us all, won’t He also give us everything else?” God has already proved His love for us in sending His Son, Jesus, to pay the penalty for our sins— all of our sins. He has also given us His Holy Living Word to reveal the truth we need for daily living, for going through all of life’s storms. He has sent His Holy Spirit to live within us, being our teacher and guide, showing us the way and giving us courage and wisdom. He has indeed given us everything we need to get through anything at all.
You and I are not the coach who may dare challenge God on a wrong call. God is the coach and needs no referee to make any calls on His designs. He is Almighty God, the Master Potter who takes the clay of our lives and molds us into His image a little more each day — if we let Him. We have free choice. We can jump off the potter’s wheel, claiming it hurts too much to be molded, or we can be still in His presence, trusting that He loves us as much today as the day His Son died for us.
When we are in the dark and we are afraid, let us not dare toss out a red flag, claiming God rethink His plans; let us choose to praise Him in the dark, thanking Him for the Light in our hearts, clinging to Him in steadfast hope, knowing that His love is unbreakable, unshakable, eternal. His plans for us are often different than what you and I would design, but His plans are without mistake and are always performed in love — not some of the time, but all of the time.