Moments after I
shared vented to one of the ladies in my prayer group, caught up in my inner dialogue internal complaining, as I carefully maniacally tossed laundry into the basket—God asked what seemed to be a very unfair question…
What if this never changes?
Don’t we all have a this? That person that drives you nuts…that situation you can’t seem to catch a break with…that challenge you can’t overcome.
The this that causes strength to be zapped, emotions to be unraveled and faith to be weakened. The this that brings out the very worst in you, that causes sleepless nights and unending questions of “Why God?” Why does evil seem to prevail? Why is wrong made to look right? Why isn’t doing the right thing leading to good things? Why me? Why this?
I know that the battle belongs to God, that vengeance is His and all things work together for the good of those who love Him. I know the verses, the threads of hope we cite in our well-rehearsed Christianese language. The way we claim scripture like it’s a magic genie. And how prayer can so easily become like a vending machine dispenser.
Somehow we don’t stop to consider that very hard question God was asking of me in the midst of my woe-is-me-nothing-will-ever-change-or-get-better tirade. Because let’s face it, sometimes our this doesn’t change. We’re convinced that believing enough, praying enough, quoting scripture enough will cause a change in our circumstances. It’s what keeps us going, pressing forward.
Here’s what I think God was trying to show me in the question, “What if this never changes?” Am I trusting in the outcome more than I’m trusting Him?
It’s easy to put my faith in a God that redirects a challenging circumstance in my life. A God that takes a difficult person out of the way. A God that removes every obstacle. A God that rights all the wrongs.
But can I have the same kind of faith in a God who continues to allow challenging circumstances (with no end in sight)…who keeps a difficult person in my life (one who rubs me wrong every opportunity available)…who doesn’t remove the obstacles before me (which stand like looming mountains)…and wrongs are never made right (even when the other person gets away with doing the wrong thing and my right choices seem to blow up in my face)?
This, my friend, is where the genuineness and depth of our faith is the most revealing. Because when it’s not about our circumstances, He will still remain on the throne of our heart. He will still be holy and good. He will be enough. We will offer Him our praise and thanksgiving. We will trust in God, even if our this never changes.