I should have a doctorate by now. The way I plead, kick, scream, whine, and otherwise give God the hugest run for his money. What is wrong with me, I'll lament. Why can't I be a "normal" Christian. Yeno, the one who goes to church every Sunday dressed fit to be killed, not a hair out of place, an emotion let go, a will totally surrendered. I can promise God right now, I will never be that kind of Christian. I wouldn't even know where to start!
For me life has always been tough. Sometimes, to ease my pain, I like to imagine God is going to use it all, use every drop, and allow me to tell a dry and thirsty people about his marvelous redemption plan. Then life happens. Oh, God, does it happen. And then I am left wondering, reeling, saddened at my obvious lack of submission and faith.
Stubborn? Yes. Unfaithful? Yes. Prideful? Yes. Rebellious? Yes! I am your classic sinner. I have no hope apart from Jesus. I have no life apart from Him. I have nothing, am nothing, can do nothing, and now can apparently not plan anything apart from this one I choose to follow so many years ago.
Why, God, why? When God when? Oh, how I lament. It's funny to me there is a book in the Bible called "Lamentations". Yeah, that's a good one. How does the Lord keep lovingly, patiently keep putting up with me? He MUST see something more than I see.
I am disappointed today. Something I had really, really wanted to see happen in my life that would have caused a cease to the turmoil and trouble I see on a day to day basis would have been eliminated. I prayed hard and long for this miracle. I did not doubt, I did not waver that God would come through the way I had expected, but guess what? He didn't. And you know what's worse? He is not talking to me about it. Dead silence in the heavens, dead silence, as I search.
Why does God, an almighty, loving, gracious, perfect God allow bad things to happen to people who are doing everything they know to do right? Is this why many Christians simply up and leave the church, leave his provision all together? Is this why America is full of "inoculated" Saints who won't surrender to Him their everything? America is not full of people who do not know or are not aware of the gospel, Grandma and Grandpa has made sure of that.
America is full of half-hearted Christians who are not willing to give their all to this Man God named Jesus. We let him in half way, we open the door partly, but we do not commit to this Way when things get tough, when life comes at you like a hurricane. It is in those moments that we slam the door on him, and say never mind, I've got this.
How that must grieve the heart of God. He knows what is best. He has a plan. I repeat, "HE" has a plan. Why aren't we following? I haven't got that figured out yet so I'll leave that for another time, but I will tell you what this round with the Almighty has taught me, since I am always so very eager to share.
I have learned that you may have a good plan for your life. You may be able to see every obstacle, map out every detail and know for certain mentally that you will reach your desired destination. You may have even taken steps to accomplish your said goal, and things appear as if everything is going to go your way, but guess what. I can solemnly assure you, if you have prayed for God to be the Lord of your life, and you want His very best for your life, then you may have some nasty surprises in store. I have learned that God is not so concerned about our plans for our lives. He is more concerned about the temperature of our heart towards him. He is more interested to see if he takes every, single comfortable thing you are accustomed to and replaces them with briers, thorns, even a cross, will you as his follower, pick it up and keep the pace with him?
If you are not willing to do that, if you are not willing to suffer with Christ, then you my dearest friends, are not willing to have all that Christ died for. You will not see his glory. Sure, you will make it to heaven, we all know that is based on Jesus sacrifice alone, but if you want everything Christ died for you to possess in the here and now, you will suffer. Counting on it helps ease the pain, but counting on Him in you makes you a threshing instrument that not even the gates of hell will prevail against.
So I leave you with this, are you in? Make sure you count the cost. You and I were purchased with the precious blood of Christ, and our inheritance is found in Him alone.
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