God sometimes raises difficulties in the lives of His people, that He may have the glory of subduing them and helping His people over them. — Matthew Henry (from Pastor Jeff’s sermon yesterday)
Pastor Jeff used this quote from Matthew Henry during his message yesterday and I really had to absorb those words, because they brought healing to my most inner place… my soul.
There are so many people in our congregation (maybe even you) who have serious physical problems, serious financial difficulties, serious marital strife… so first, I know my trivial problems offer no comparison. However, for the past two years, I’ve been asking God the most common question any of us ask: “Why, God, why?”. You can add as many explanation points to the end of that question as you want; how many would depend on the seriousness of the problem and the anger you hold inside.
I’ve had plenty of explanation points added to that question, and have screamed at God and shaken my fist at Him. But after the emotion wanes, you’re still stuck with the question, “Why? Why did this happen to me? What is the purpose of this? God, I thought you wanted me to do this. So why did it turn out as a train-wreck?”
In the entire time of asking those questions, I never got an answer (until yesterday), and in the course of asking, my attention was on myself, instead of on God and others.
Through the course of several months, God has been trying to get my attention. He got through last week with a burning bush — literally — in Steve Williams’ message. That got my ears perked up. Yesterday he used Pastor Jeff’s message and the quote from Matthew Henry.
Re-read that quote. Then re-read it again. Get it deep down in you. It takes faith to do that. But by REALLY absorbing it, it might help you get past your anger and/or disillusionment toward God about whatever has happened to you in the past, and allow you to begin serving Him again.