You know those moments when you just don’t understand why things are happening a certain way? Maybe you question God, maybe you demand some answers, maybe you just retreat into a coma of sadness, or maybe you just give up. I’ve had plenty of moments like those. This morning, I had another one.
And let me tell ya, it was pretty amusing.
I woke up this morning, excited about church and a meeting for student greeters that was being held before the service. As I got ready for the busy day ahead of me, I was certain today was going to be simply amazing. After all, what could go wrong? I was about to worship my awesome God, hang out with an awesome group of girls at church, and dive into the Word at one of the best places in the entire world, better known as Starbucks. Nothing could bring me down. Or so I thought.
As I walked downstairs and saw breakfast was still in the process of being cooked, I worried about making it to the church on time. After all, it was the first official student greeters meeting and I didn’t want to be late.
When breakfast was served, I concentrated on eating as quickly as possible in hopes of maybe reaching the church before the meeting ended. I was so anxious, I wasn’t even able to enjoy the delicious meal my parents had prepared. After my late bite, I glanced at the clock. There’s no way I’m going to make it.
By the time I got inside the car, it was too late.
Frustrated and angry, I ended up asking God, Why?
Why is this not going as planned? Why am I going to miss the meeting? Why did You allow this to happen? Don’t You want me to be there? How could You do this to me? Can’t you see how disappointed and devastated I am?
The entire car ride to church, I didn’t say a thing. I was fuming in silence, angry at my parents for making me miss this important meeting, confused as to why God allowed this to happen. When I arrived just before the service began, I hurried to my pastor and apologized for not making it on time to the meeting, only to be slapped in the face with the most amusing news I’ve heard in quite some time.
“Oh, don’t worry. The meeting’s next Sunday.”
The meeting’s next Sunday. Wow.
I couldn’t help but chuckle to myself. All that worrying, all that bitterness, all that anger was for nothing. How funny was that? I felt as if God was laughing with me too. Duh, Jessie! This is why!
When I look back at how frustrated I was with the world, with my parents, and even with God, I feel somewhat ashamed. I didn’t understand why my day wasn’t going as planned so I ended up blaming others and allowing myself to become angry.
Simply put, I didn’t see the big picture.
I think this happens a lot to most of us. When something goes wrong, when things don’t work out, when a disaster strikes, we’re so quick to let anger or sadness control us. Because we can’t see the big picture like God can, we look for someone or something to blame, allowing resentment to build up inside of us from our confusion.
Out of this experience, I am reminded of Job from the Old Testament. He lost everything he had, was left confused and depressed, but he somehow still managed to keep his faith. Even though Job couldn’t see the big picture, he remained strong in his trust that God was good and he continued to praise Him.
“Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.’ ” (Job 1:20-21)
How many instances can you recall in which everything seemed hopeless and disastrous but it all ended up working out anyway? That was God working in your life. Even now, if you are dealing with a loss, maybe a heartbreak or death from cancer, God is still present. What we may see as an unfortunate disaster or a hopeless situation, God may see as a beautiful process of transformation and maturity that only He can fully understand and control. Whatever we are dealing with is another story that is untold, and God, the ultimate author, loves us too much to allow us to suffer in vain. He has a happily ever after written for us- an eternity spent with Him.
“We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him.” (Romans 8:28)