“Is it sad that I’m annoyed because the sun is out even though I should be happy?”
I replied, “Why are you annoyed with the sun?”
“Because it’s shining right in my face.”
We sometimes blame the source when our discomfort and annoyance is more about the impact from the source. My friend was actually glad the sun was shining that day. At least, she was thankful for the warmth. But she didn’t like the inconvenience of adjusting her blinds through the day. We had several days of cloud cover, which was a bit depressing but didn’t require the effort of dealing with the sunshine, which we wanted to break through the clouds.
I think we approach God similarly at times. When we are uncomfortable or uncertain about a situation, we can quickly point to him instead of considering other factors. He has authority, so he’s an easy target. Why would he let something happen? Why doesn’t he do something about it?
But sometimes we blame him even though we’re not willing to give him credit for other things. We take credit for some of the positive stuff. We only recognize his power and authority when we need someone to point to or explain something. We need a quick, easy answer.
Sure, God is involved, but so are other factors—our choices and their consequences, others’ choices and consequences, laws of nature, and much more. God has authority to affect all those things, but we and others have the freedom to choice so many things that lead to so many other things. Then we get to choice how we respond, including our thoughts and attitudes—and blame or gratefulness. God works through it all, weaving together what will heal, challenge, and grow us. He stitches purpose into what seems unusable and unreasonable. But we give him that material with our choices.
When our focus is on him instead of our circumstances, we don’t like every situation but we have a context that keeps our gratitude in check.
3 thoughts on “It’s Not Just Right”
Such a rich truth…
I work with the youth at my parent’s church, and the leadership thereof decided a week ago or so, to shift. Not once was I at least prepped for this shift, if nothing else, so I was kind of bitter about the sudden announcement in a vision meeting, considering that for a year solid, the Lord has had me constantly engaging and teaching this group. After making a soft approach to the leadership last week, I was met with, “I feel this is the way we need to go,” so I stepped back….
In the meanwhile, I was dreading having to tell the young people about this shift because I knew they wouldn’t like it, so God gave me an out, in order to keep my hands clean. He simply said, “let the leadership make the announcement.” Whew, what a relief that was, but still the way things were handled, left a bitter taste in my mouth.
Fast forward to yesterday, the day that the announcement was supposed to be made, I was approached before any of the students got to church and told that there would be an evening outing of bowling, where they would be informed. This sounded good except for one thing, well a couple of things, I had to take my daughter back to college and many of the youth were not in attendance. To these things I was told, just come when you get back and we’re going to go with whoever is there..
By this time I was getting really sour because it was becoming apparent that ministry direction isn’t something we discuss before things are rolled out, especially with the one’s who are carrying out those specific efforts, but oh well.
Long story made real short, I wasn’t able to make the outing, BUT GOD, He was protecting me and the relationship He’d led me in building with the youth. He kept me from being the bearer of bad news. He let the youth know that this decision wasn’t mine and I had nothing to do with it. So my trust factor with the youth remains in tact, in spite of, AND GOD was working it out all along, even though the way this was handled made me extremely bitter.
BUT God uses bitter to make us lead BETTER!!
SO YES, “When our focus is on him instead of our circumstances, ALTHOUGH we don’t like every situation HE gives us a context that keeps our gratitude in check.
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Yes! Thank you so much for sharing. I was able to read your story yesterday but didn’t get a chance to respond, but it is so encouraging to be reminded that even through our trials, frustrations, and uncertainties, we can find hope and reassurance through our own and each others’ stories and experiences! I encourage you to keep focusing on God and the goodness he consistently provides!
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