Thursday, October 9, 2014

Why, God....Why?

We all tend to ask the question, "Why?". "Why me?" or "Why, God?". Why is all this happening to me? What we don't keep at the forefront of our thinking is that there is a bigger purpose - something going on that we don't see. And even if we could see it, we probably couldn't understand it. Those things are for God and have meaning far beyond our human intelligence or even life here on this earth. We only need to do one, simple thing....trust God. Here's a simplified example.

Me: God, can I ask You a question?

God: Sure

Me: Promise You won't get mad

God: I promise

Me: Why did You let so much bad stuff happen to me today?

God: What do you mean?

Me: Well… I woke up late, my car took forever to start, they made my sandwich wrong at lunch, on the way home my phone went dead just as I picked up a call. And on top of it all - when I got home, I just wanted to soak my feet in my new foot massager & relax, but it wouldn't work! Nothing went right today! What is going on?

God: Well, death was sitting at your bed this morning so I had to send one of my angels to battle him for your life. I let you sleep through that. I didn't allow your car start because there was a drunk driver on your route that would have hit you if you were on the road.

Me: (ashamed)

God: The first person who made your sandwich today was sick & I didn't want you to catch what they have. I knew you couldn't afford to miss work.

Me (embarrassed): Okay

God: Your phone went dead because the person that was calling was going to give false witness about what you said on that call.  I didn't even let you talk to them so you would be covered.

Me (softly): I see God

God: Oh and that foot massager - it had a shortage that was going to throw out all of the power in your house tonight. I didn't think you wanted to be in the dark.

Me: I'm sorry, God

God: Don't be sorry, just learn to trust Me.... in All things - the good & the bad.

Me: I will trust You.

God: And don't doubt that My plan for your day is always better than your plan.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Each Life

Take a seat. Watch people. Wherever you are right now or later today, sit down and watch the people.

It’s amazing to think that each person who walks by, who works in your office, who passes by you in Walmart, or who's sitting in the car next to you…has a life – a life just like your own. Each person has friends, family, bad experiences, good experiences, are going through challenges, have dreams they’ve never realized, have positive and negative things about their personalities, or have a dog or cat at home that they probably consider a member of their family. Each person – whether you know them or can even see them physically…has a life – years and years of things they’ve lived through and will continue to live through.

It’s even more amazing to think that God – knows every hair follicle on each person’s head, cares about each person and wants to guide each person through this maze of life. There HAS to be a God – otherwise, we’re lost in this life. Because without the hope of a God and Heaven, this world and this life is even more of a sad place than we already think it is. What’s the use of living? I believe that’s why people give up hope, get depressed, or contemplate suicide – those are the moments when they are so focused on this life and this world (that they can see).....that they can’t see God and the (eternal) life coming after this one.

Somehow, we’ve got to tear ourselves away from the agony of this everyday“life” that’s happening to us and focus on God who's got us covered regardless of what's happening to us or around us. God has each life here for reason. Yep....and it's much more than just trying to make it through each day without losing your sanity. 

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

They Did Me Wrong

We all want life to be good and happy.  We all want life to be “fair”. Nobody likes it when life is unfair to them. We even ask God, “ Why did that have to happen to me”?

But God wants us at a place where we are above the situations that surround us. He wants us at a place that when life is unfair to us, we can be okay with it….we rise above it. He wants us to see the bigger picture – which is, in essence, that situation doesn’t control us or His purpose for us. First, He wants us to react with Christ-likeness and second, He’s still gonna get done what He needs to whether we react properly or not. But when we do react properly, we receive a benefit. We become stronger and more able to handle the next challenge (and there will be another challenge right around the corner). We make those irritating situations matter by giving them space in our mind…over and over….year after year. It consumes us until it becomes bigger than God. Yep, bigger than God himself (in our minds) because we’ve rationalized that God can’t (or won’t) help us. The problem has pushed God out of the picture.

Sometimes those circumstances are in our lives to give us opportunities to see if we’ve learned the lesson, “Can I let this roll off of my back or am I gonna let this stick me straight through the heart”? Every time we don’t learn the lesson, it’s like getting up off of the operating table before the surgeon has a chance to perform surgery. The tumor lives on and continues to grow – becoming even tougher and more complicated to remove later on.

God wants us to be able to drop off the things that we consider unfair – times when we were done wrong. He already knows it was unfair, but you are blessed and grow in Christ-likeness when you “let it go”.  Just put it away – don’t keep reliving it. The Bible never teaches that life should be fair. Consider this: Was it fair that Jesus was persecuted, treated wrong and nailed to a cross?

"Why Can't They See" - Wayne Tolbert

Who Wants A Happy Life?

Everyone wants to be happy. Whatever happiness is for you - you want that for your life...and you spend you entire life trying to get it. Two things to point out: 1) Your life is much longer than your years here on earth, and 2) God’s ultimate goal for your life on earth is not happiness, but character development. Once you grasp these two things, life becomes simpler.

God made you for a purpose - for something here on this earth and for something beyond this earth. Life on this earth is just a prelude....a dress rehearsal for the real show. God needs us to grow up spiritually and become like Christ because that's what we're gonna need after this life on earth is done. Becoming like Christ doesn't mean losing who you are and becoming a mindless clone carrying around a bible. Christ-likeness means transforming and building your character (love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control), not changing your personality.
 
Anytime you forget that building character and becoming more like Christ is one of God’s purposes for your life, you'll get frustrated by your circumstances. You’ll wonder, "Why is this happening to me? Why am I having such a difficult time? I didn't expect it to go like this". One answer is that life can be difficult - that's part of what helps us grow. Therefore, being happy should not be the goal. If it is, you will fail....all the time.

Remember, earth is not Heaven. If you keep heaven at the forefront of your thinking, it'll make this life easier to live. Life on earth compared to life in Heaven is kinda like comparing a droplet of water to an ocean. To us, eighty years feels like a long time, but really, it's just a drop of water - a spray of mist in the air that disappears momentarily. Many of us are trying to have our perfect "heaven" here on earth. But, there will be pain living on this earth - it's unavoidable. We have to realize that the perfection of life and "happiness" (we're continually seeking) will come on the other side of this life here on earth.