'We can trust God'

    with our 'Why?' moments

   Monday Reflection


19th April 2021

...those who know...

10  And those who know your name
   put their trust in you, for you, O Lord,
   have not forsaken those who seek you.

.... Psalm 9:10

There are times in life
when the stress and fear around circumstances
we are caught up with, cause us to cry out to God,
'Why, Lord, why would you allow this to happen,
this pain, this seemingly unending struggle?
Why won't this testing time end? Why?'

We all face moments when we don't know
what will happen next and we realize we must
just place our faith in God to answer our prayers.
However, trusting in God isn't always easy
and often we seek a reminder
of God's love and grace.

Do you ever find yourself recalling
past painful events?
Maybe a traumatic experience like a divorce,
a sudden loss of a friend or a
friend's betrayal that has left you
in a mess of jumbled feelings.

Whatever the reason,
we find ourselves hung up
in the age-old question of 'Why?'
It is one of the first questions we learn to ask,
(as anyone who has encountered
young children will know!)
and it remains on our lips as we negotiate
the difficult times in our lives.

We may pray and read our Bibles,
but that nagging question has a powerful way of
keeping us stuck and taking away our joy;
before long doubts begin assaulting our thoughts.

I wonder if God has forgotten me.
Maybe he's abandoned me altogether.
His good plans must be for others, not me.
I must have been really bad to deserve all this!

But God reminds us,
through his words in the Bible,
of what some of our spiritual giants endured.

There was Joseph,
who spent years in service and prison after
being sold into slavery by his brothers.
There was David, who had to flee for his life
and endure years on the run to escape
the sword of King Saul;
and then there was Paul,
who suffered multiple beating,
shipwrecks, imprisonment and an
intrusive 'thorn in the flesh'
which God never removed.
Yet Paul wrote these extraordinary words

16  Therefore we do not lose heart.
   Though outwardly we are wasting away,
   yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
17  For our light and momentary troubles
   are achieving for us an eternal glory
   that far outweighs them all.

....2 Corinthians 4:16-17

Paul's attitude astonishes me,
for his trials were anything but light and momentary;
and yet he held on to God's
bigger vision for his life.
How could a man with so many 'Why?'
moments exhibit this kind of faith?
The following verse reveals Paul's
secret to steadfast trust;

18  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen,
   but on what is unseen,
   since what is seen is temporary,
   but what is unseen is eternal.


Paul understood the critical truth that,
on this earth, we see only part of the story,
and through our tangled web of troubles,
God is working out his unseen and eternal purposes.
He is working the "Why?' moments
into something beautiful and far more valuable
than we could possibly imagine, or desire.

In hindsight we can see this truth in action.
We follow Joseph's story as he
ascends to power in Egypt and
David takes his anointed place as
King of Israel.
We see Paul's perseverance result in the
many treasured letters of the New Testament;
and those confusing, painful 'Why?' moments
they underwent played a crucial role.

For without descending to the dungeon
Joseph could never have ascended to power;
without the chaos and persecution David
would never have worn the crown;
and without all his trials and sufferings
Paul could never have been such
an effective evangelist.

Our heavenly father wants us to use
our 'Why?' moments in the same way.
He hasn't forgotten or abandoned us;
he loves us deeply and even now
is working for us,
not against us.
As Paul wrote to the people of Rome;

And we know that in all things
God works for the good of
those who love him,
who have been called according
to his purpose.

....Roman 8|28

So we can walk in hope,
knowing God's strength renews us each day
and we can place our pain into his capable hands -
for we serve a God who turns our
misery into something extraordinary.

It may be interesting to watch,
or just listen to a song
'Faithful One'
sung by Brian Doerksen
(with lyrics)'
via the link shown below.