There are things we often know, but sometimes lose sight of during difficult times. Today, I had one of the gentlest reminders as my family and I worshiped God.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve accepted (and even marveled) that God has a plan for each of our lives, and like the back of a woven tapestry, we often don’t understand the full extent or the “big picture” because all we see are a million little threads, each representing moments in our lives, woven throughout. Over the past few years, my family and I have faced some very difficult situations – things that have tried us and brought us to our knees. We’ve been so low where the only place we could look was UP. My faith has been tried over and over again. And, with each of those times, someone would say: “Just give it to God. This is part of His plan.”
At first, those words comforted me. But, after some really heart-wrenching events I became furious, “His plan? Well, maybe I don’t like His plan! Maybe His plan is FOR me to go through (what seemed like) endless trials and to hurt…maybe I don’t WANT that!?!”
Have you ever felt that way? – Like maybe Joel Osteen has gotten loud* a few too many times? Okay, so maybe I’m the only one who though “Oh crap.” when our pastor shared a sermon one day about God never promising us great times if we followed Him – and, here I was just hoping for my drink to be spiked with what ever Joel Osteen was having. Who really wants to hear that God has planned for you to lose your house, possibly your marriage, and maybe let’s throw in a baby too? – And, let’s not waste time, we’ll wad it up in the time frame of just a few years.
Yeh, suddenly that whole “God’s plan” thing just made me want to cry. Rather than being a thought of comfort, it was more like a threat. – Especially when nobody knew what to say…except “Give it to God.”
But, today I found an answer in a little devotional book. Basically, it said:
God made each of us, our desires and passions included. So, He knows us to our very core. And, He has awesome things planned for us – not just His idea of awesome, but OUR idea of awesome. And sure, we’re going to have to go through some REALLY rough things to get to those great and awesome things, but His plan for our lives aren’t CENTERED around those hard times. His plan is centered around the GREAT THINGS He wants for us. The bad stuff is just on the way, sometimes it’s what helps us get there and sometimes it’s to help shape us for what He’s prepared for us.
I’m not sure how what’s recently happened fits in exactly, and maybe I won’t ever know…but, it sure as heck is more comforting than before.
*”getting loud” means getting high with really good pot. I don’t necessarily know this from experience.