Beauty in the Pain

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God wants to know us. He wants us to participate in the love that He offers. He loves us and hates the sin that entangles our hearts. Never idle, God is active, meeting us where we are in our darkest hours. I’ve heard it said that God is more for our good than we are; more for our holiness than our happiness. I think that our happiness is contingent on His holiness. We hurt. We sin, others sin, the world is broken. Yet, God is sovereign over it all and calling us unto Himself.

Maybe it is pessimism but I seems that my lot in life is struggle. Broken relationships, strained family, cars breaking down, then breaking down again, money issues, death, sadness, loneliness. My heart grows desperate for something positive, some feeling to destroy the numbness. I often find myself running towards sin and depravity, instead of the Healer. We create our own little gods, replacing the one true God. Here guilt and shame collide with perpetual questions: Why can’t God intervene? Why did this happen? Why does God seem so small and myself smaller? How can a good God allow all this to happen? Not just to me personally but to people. When I am ready to throw in the towel and call it quits, this is the apex moment. This is where we can shrink back or grow and mature in our faith. Instead of asking why, we should ask, God show me Your will in this. Show me how this is drawing me closer to You. As we mature in our relationship in Christ we ask for less clarity of the why and more wisdom in how God is using the moments to mature others and ourselves.

 

God wants to, and will, reign supremely in our hearts. I love this quote by J.I. Packer

“God hates the sins of His people, and uses all kinds of inward and outward pains and griefs to wean their hearts from compromise and disobedience. Still He seeks the fellowship of His people, and sends them both sorrows and joys in order to detach their love from other things and attach it to Himself.”

God is chasing after our hearts. Like the Father in the story of the two stupid sons, He meets us while we are a long way off. He is not afraid to tell His children no, to use hurts and struggles to draw people nearer to Him. He comforts the broken hearted and binds their wounds. In Hosea, God uses the analogy of bringing His people into the desert. The desert where things go to die, where there is struggle, temptation, hurt, doubts and fears. He brings us there to woo our hearts. There is beauty here in the desert, and we are not alone.

If you are struggling today, don’t push away from God. Press in, get angry, shout, cry, ask questions, share your fears. He is big enough to handle all of that. Press in. Press on.

 

 

 

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