Tuesday, February 15, 2022

Writers, Don't Interrupt the Divine

by Tracy Smoak 

“The entire world seems to be ‘held back,’” Tina Yeager wrote in “Called and Held for New Things” published January 3 on Inkspirations Online. Her phrase connected with me as suspense seems to hang in the air. No one quite knows what to expect in 2022.

A look back in history may comfort. Peter’s experience with Jesus’ transfiguration offers clues how God interrupts the natural to reveal the divine. Jesus takes Peter, James, and John to a high mountain where he is transfigured (Matthew 17). He becomes as radiant as the sun and starts talking with Moses and Elijah.

This certainly wasn’t business as usual, and Peter wanted to participate. He offered to build three shelters. I have to giggle a bit. Why do radiant beings hundreds of years old need puny manmade huts on a remote peak? Furthermore, how did Peter know who the prophets were since there were no photographs. But I get that Peter wanted to be part of what God was doing.

Me too. It’s just that like Peter, I sometimes get so busy wanting to jump in and establish some sort of ministry, that I miss the larger point of what God is doing.

God stops Peter and says about Jesus, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!” (Matthew 17:5 NIV).

Am I listening in this time of waiting? Am I quiet in my spirit so that God can reveal his plans?

Jesus touched the three disciples who were facedown in fear. “Get up. Don’t be afraid” (Matthew 17:7 NIV).

Neither should we be anxious about delays. God will deliver. He is amassing resources and equipping trained armies to bring light and hope. Just as Elijah served as a faithful messenger of truth around 840 B.C., so can we. Tarrying a bit to ensure the words are just right is prudent.

Timing with God takes on a new perspective. Some six centuries prior to Elijah’s work, Moses also met God in solitary places. As Moses conversed with the Lord, his face became radiant (Exodus 34). Because he relied on the Lord alone for teaching, Moses was empowered to bring instruction to the entire community. The setback of the first shattered stone commandments didn’t defeat God’s plan.

Moses overcame the episode of the broken tablets and regrouped to organize building the sanctuary. “All who are skilled among you are to come and make everything the Lord has commanded….” (Exodus 35:10 NIV). Many articles were needed and each required a unique craftsperson. Items ranged from constructing poles and coverings for the tent to weaving garments and forging bronze basins.

We each have a role to enhance the sanctuary. Let our prayer in this season of equipping be like that Moses uttered for the artisans of Israel: “May we be filled with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills…” (Exodus 35:31 NIV).

We can trust God will use this period to develop our talents and enable us to carry out the work constructing sanctuary for those who are hurt and lost.


Tracy Smoak is a freelance writer and photographer. She hosts blogs where to find hope at www.tracysmoak.com. Her bachelor’s degree is in Communication for Business and her master’s is in Education. She is a licensed English teacher. Her devotional book with original photographs of tranquil water scenes in Lake County, Florida is scheduled for release in August 2022. She also has a contract for a book about encouragement with Bold Vision set for 2023. Her nonfiction, Break the Cycle: Healing from an Abusive Relationship, made the 2014 national list of The United Methodist Women’s Reading Program.


  1. "God interrupts the natural to reveal the divine." How true that is! The older I get, the more I see how He will do whatever He wants to get our attention -- but on His time, not ours. Thanks for the reminder of how all the pieces fit together.

  2. Hi Leigh, I just finished updating a novel begun a decade ago. God's timing is different than mine :). Thank you for the nice feedback.