Didn't Understand At The Time

Didn't Understand At The Time

22 December 2016

Reading: John 12; Psalm 68


His disciples didn’t understand at the time that this was a fulfillment of prophecy. But after Jesus entered into his glory, they remembered what had happened and realized that these things had been written about him. (John 12:16 NLT)

The life Jesus lived perfectly fulfilled all the prophecies in all the scriptures written centuries earlier about him. The circumstances of his birth, the manner of his life and teaching, the agony of his death, the glory of his resurrection, all perfectly matched what was written about him many years before.

But those who lived the events of prophecy with him often didn’t understand what was really happening. They didn’t understand that what was happening right before their eyes—what was happening to Jesus and to them—was the fulfillment of God’s will and God’s word. Later, much later, they remembered what Jesus did and said, and as they remembered what God had promised earlier through the prophets, it all made sense. But at the time, they just didn’t understand!

Happens to me all the time! I can be right in the middle of experiencing the answer to a prayer, or the fulfillment of a promise God has given to Jean and me personally, and I don’t understand—I don’t recognize it for what it is—at the time. Later when I’m talking about it or thinking it through, it’s so clear. But at the time I’m oblivious!

I want to do better at recognizing what God is doing—fulfilling his promises, answering prayer—at the time—right while it’s happening. I want to be able, like Peter on the day of Pentecost, to say, “This is what the prophet Joel was talking about!”

I think if I can learn to be more alert, more aware of God’s activity in the moment, more sensitive to the promptings of God’s Spirit, I can cooperate with him more fully. That’s what I want to do. How about you?


Father, Please help me to be more aware of your activity in the moment. Help me to recognize answered prayer, fulfilled promises, and your wisdom and power in the very moment. I want to be more effective through greater awareness and more intentional cooperation with you—with your Spirit. Amen.

Back to Articles...