Are you there God?

Change… learning from mistakes and failures… heartbreaks… all of these suck! Sorry, but it’s how I feel. I mean, why do we have to go through bad things? When I was younger, I used to wonder this all the time. If God is such a good God, then why do bad things happen? If God is God and He can do anything, why doesn’t He just stop all the bad? Anyone else ever have these questions?

Well, as my pastor says, we’re not in Heaven yet. We are still living in a broken world, which was broke the day Eve and Adam ate the apple. The enemy wanders this world, looking for ways to trip us up, bring us down, and turn us away from God and each other.

I’m now learning to kind of look forward to hard times. I never would have said that in my 20’s or 30’s, trust me! (Aaand… I just gave up the fact that I’m way past my 30’s! OOPS!) But I’m starting to learn that when I’m in those hard times, God can really mold me… if I let Him. And I think that’s the key, really. Letting Him, trusting Him, knowing that He is still good no matter how much bad is happening, and praising Him through it.

Romans 5:3-5 says… More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Boy, I must have a lot of endurance and character! Ha ha!! But, have I let it produce hope in me? Or anger and bitterness?

I think for a long time in my life, I let it produce anger and bitterness. I was always so mad at God, blaming Him for everything. As if I had nothing to do with my own choices, or the outcome of them. I was walking through life thinking, ‘No one is going to tell me what to do!’ And then getting mad at God when I suffered the consequences of my own actions. I wasn’t having a close relationship with Him or studying His word enough to know the real truth. I just made assumptions about who He was, his character, and going off the few verses I remembered out of the bible. Have you ever judged someone or made assumptions about someone before really knowing them? Show of hands please!!! I’m pretty sure we all have, if we’re honest. Well, that’s what I was doing to God.

When I decided to take the time to get to know Him, to get in the word and really study it and let Him speak life and truth into me, I realized that it’s impossible for God to be a ‘bad and mean’ God. It goes totally against His character. It says it throughout the bible.

This is the message we have heard from Him and declare to you. God is light, in Him there is no darkness at all. 1 John 1:5

The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will He harbor His anger forever; He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His love for those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far He has removed our transgressions from us. Psalm 103:8-12

There are so many verses about His character, love and goodness. These are just a couple!

There’s still the question of why that pops up in my head though. Why do bad things happen? Why does He allow it? And then I remind myself that we’re not in heaven yet. That I may never know why and that I still need to trust God. I need to remember that the bible doesn’t promise us a pain free, easy life. Especially if we choose to follow Jesus. But Jesus does say…

…In the world you have distress. But be encouraged! I have conquered the world. John 16:33

Thank you Jesus!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

God is always good through it all. God will always love us through it all. Keep praising Him. Keep trusting Him. He will come through. He has already conquered the world.

We know how the story ends.

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