“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. – Isaiah 55:8
No one ever played basketball like Pete Maravich. He was a ball-handling wizard, a scoring machine who broke nearly every major college scoring record. Ten years as an NBA star and millions of dollars later, he retired—unhappy and empty.
That is not the end of the story. In 1983, Pete surrendered his life to Christ. For the next 4 years, his driving passion was to share with others the wonderful joy he had found in Jesus Christ. Then, early in 1988, he died suddenly of heart failure. He was only 40 years old.
Why did God take him? Why didn’t He allow Pete to continue leading people to Christ with his hard-hitting testimony? Perhaps Pete’s autopsy report holds the answer. Doctors discovered that Pete had a congenital heart problem that should have prevented him from playing basketball.
In fact, they said he probably should never have lived beyond 20. Suddenly, we could get a glimpse of God’s marvelous ways. He didn’t take Pete early; He preserved his life until he had accepted Christ and made his testimony known.
When death claims a believer who is still in his prime, we wonder why. That’s natural. But our wondering should never lead to doubting God’s goodness or wisdom. He remains trustworthy. His ways are higher, and so much better, than ours.
We are living in perilous times. It can be very hard to understand the circumstances we find ourselves in. Take heart! God is at work. Even in desperation there is deliverance. Even in death there is life! The more clearly we see God’s sovereignty, the less perplexed we are by man’s calamities.