THE ROD AND THE TELEPHONE CABLE
I bought a flexible bin to hold odds and ends. With it, to my surprise, came four rigid rods. I discovered that there was a vertical “pocket” for each rod to be fitted into, with a velcro (hook and loop) flap to keep the rod in its pocket. The bin was flexible, but with even one rod, there was some sturdiness about it; certainly with all four rods. Without the rods, the bin would collapse.
Then, not two feet away, I noticed my iPhone cable. It was straightened out at the ends but in the middle, I had it looped over several times and held with a velcro (hook and loop) strap. The phone cable was quite flexible. It supported my phone not so much in its cableness but in what flowed through the cable.
And I thought, God is that way. He is capable of being rigid enough to be supportive when He needs to be, yet He can be flexible as my phone cable, when that is called for. Many think of Jesus as being more rigid than flexible. They speak of His being “unchangeable,” assuming that this means rigidity at all times. I believe His unchangeable nature is capable of being either rigid or flexible or anywhere in between, depending on the situation. If God isn’t able to meet every situation, who is? Unchangeable doesn’t mean always rigid; always stuck in the past; always out of step with now. No, He can be unchangeable yet here with us now, in the now of our human progress. He can be modern as well as not. He can be like the branch in the springtime that bends with the breeze; yet the same branch, not a different one, can snap and break in the winter wind. We haven’t changed branches; just the nature of the branch has changed. The nature of God can change without His changing. He can be the rod or the telephone cable. He made them both. And He made me. Certainly He has some flexibility about Him not only to accept the free spiritedness of me but to find me useful to Him with such characteristics. I think some people narrow their view of God to where he is perceived as just a rod; not a cable. I think they do Him an injustice, in fact, they are insulting Him. He is more than they think;more than I think.
The air we breathe undergoes some changes when we breathe it in and back out. But it does not cease to be air. As air, it is unchangeable. Yet it is flexible enough to handle our breathing it. God can be a supportive rod or go with the flow; He can do either but remain God. In Jesus’ name.