Over the past week my wife and I have been on an emotional rollercoaster ride. When things don’t go according to plan, when life comes at you with seventeen curveballs, it’s hard to keep pushing through each day. It’s tough to find the good things in life among all the distractions. So what do you do when that happens?
Picking And Choosing
When you grow up in church, you tend to find a Bible verse for everything in order to prove your own point of view. Smart people like to call this proof-texting… finding what you want in the text to prove your point… as opposed to taking all of the Bible into account.
Proof-texting works great when God is moving in your life like never before and the Bible speaks words of wisdom, encouragement, and hope. It’s like the words of the Bible are leaping off the pages and you can’t even read fast enough to keep up with how much it’s speaking to you.
But you can’t just take the good-feeling, lovey dovey parts of the Bible and throw out all the convicting and troubling verses. I mean, what do you do when you read a verse from the Bible and it just doesn’t sit well with you? What happens when your life doesn’t match what God’s Word says? Ever had a moment like that?
Yeah, me too. One of my moments was this past week.
What Are You Talking About, Paul?
In Romans chapter 8, verse 28, a guy named Paul writes…
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. (New Living Translation; emphasis added)
But what if you’re at a point in your life when you don’t see the good?
You don’t see how it’s all going to work out.
You don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.
You don’t see the silver lining… like… at all.
It makes me want to write a letter to the author and say…
What in the world were you thinking when you wrote this verse? Do you realize what real life is like?
Josh, a concerned 21st century believer
The more I thought about this verse, the more I realized the perspective behind it.
The Good? Or The Best?
Maybe God isn’t thinking about what is good for you at this moment.
Maybe God is thinking about what is best for you in the long run.
It’s hard to see God…
… when a loved one is taken from you unexpectedly.
… when your family seems to be falling apart.
… when you’re stuck in a job that doesn’t pay you nearly as hard as you work.
… when someone is talking bad behind your back and your life is filled with drama.
… when you’re hurting on the inside with a smile on the outside.
… when you’re searching for truth in a world full of lies.
Yeah. It’s really hard to see God at work when finances aren’t coming together and you’re wondering how you’ll get through the next month on two part-time jobs and a baby on the way.
I’m sorry, am I being too honest right now?
I Believe, Help Me Overcome My Unbelief
I love it when a father comes to Jesus in the book of Mark chapter 9 and he wants his son healed. When questioned on Jesus’ ability to heal his son, the father replies in verse 24…
I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief!
I can totally relate to that dad! When I get on my knees and pray, “God? You’re still there, right? You’re still working all these things for good, right? I believe, just help me overcome my unbelief!”
I hear God whisper in my heart…
I’m here… and I don’t want what’s good for you… I want what’s best.
Maybe you’ve had a week like me where you need to take a leap of faith. Maybe in the midst of a troubling, uncertain, and dark time in your life you need to take the first step and take a moment to look to God and say…
I believe… help me overcome my unbelief!
Trust me. It’ll be the best thing you could do right now. And I’ll do it with you.
One day, maybe weeks, months, or even years from now we can look back and say, “Remember that one time when things weren’t looking good but we put our trust in God? Yeah, I totally see now how God was working and how He had the best in mind.”
Will you take the leap of faith with me? Have you had a time in your life where you can look back now and see how God was working? How can you encourage others in the tough times this week?