I love sitcoms, and when you find a really funny one it’s the best. But the worst is when you sit down to watch one and a couple minutes in you know it’s coming. “Dorothy, you remember that time that…?” or “Rose, have you forgotten when…?” And they stare off into the distance as the room screen gets foggy and switches to another scene. Then you know you are in for an episode of 15 tiny clips of shows you have already seen.
Flashback episodes are the worst.
Don’t get me wrong, the clips are always funny, and having seen most of them, I know the context, but it’s just not the same. Its like the writers wanted to take a couple of days off and whipped this up while waiting to board the plane to Fiji.
A couple of mornings ago, I was reading my Bible on my way through Acts when I got to chapter 7. At the end of chapter 6, Stephen was chosen to be in the group to assist the apostles with their serving people, focusing on providing food. He also did an excellent job of living like Jesus, and God blessed him with the ability to do “wonders and miraculous signs among the people.” (chap. 6 v. 8) Some people didn’t like him and basically were jealous of Stephen and spread some rumors to get him in trouble. It worked, and in the beginning of chapter 7, the high priest asked if what they said was true?
Stephen begins his flashback episode in verse 2.
As much as I dislike them in my favorite television shows, I love a good flashback episode in the Bible. In Acts 7, Stephen goes through the story of Abraham and his obedience to God, and his faith in God giving him a son, Isaac. He goes on to tell about Isaac’s son Joseph, and all the descendants enslaved in Egypt, and then Moses, God choosing him to lead the Israelites. He then speaks of David. All these leaders in our Bible – Stephen knew all about them and was willing to tell people about it up until his last breath.
Hebrews chapter 11 is another flashback episode, and probably my favorite (Memorizing this chapter before I die is on my bucket list). Person after person is listed, showing how they believed in God and obeyed Him, even when it was hard.
There’s a mini flashback episode in James, and I’m sure there are many others scattered about the Bible. These are so valuable. To be able to look at how other people were obedient or repentant or passionate about what God had called them to do, and to see how faithful God was to them, is so encouraging.
If you ever feel like you doubt God is going to come through with what He has promised, reading His Word reminds us how we have no reason to fear, and we can always trust Him. Take a few minutes to read some of these scriptures and thank God for his faithfulness. Pray about the thing in your own life that has given you doubts and ask Him to help you have the faith you need.
Our God is always faithful.