God Will Never Disappoint You
There are some definite moments in life that cause you to ask questions like “where are you God?” “Why am I left alone in this?” “Why are these bad things happening?” “Why me Lord?” “Why now?” etc etc.
If you think you are the only one who is struggling with these kinds of questions, take heart you are not alone. There are people around you and even the bible is filled with people who asked these and other kinds of questions. Read the story of Job, Habakkuk, David, Ezekiel, and so on. You will be amazed that you are not the only one who is struggling with these kinds of questions and feelings. However, what makes those “heroes” different from the modern day believers is just one thing; they never confused their life with the relationship they have with God.
Take Job for example, he was a righteous man. He was a man of integrity. Look Chap 1:1 he “feared God” and “turned away from evil.” But look what has happened to him. When his faith was under fire, after he experienced the death of each and every single one of his children, after he experienced a dramatic financial crisis, after he was stricken with boils from the soles of his foot to the crown of his head, when his wife came to him and told him to “Curse God and die” Do you remember what Job said to her? He said, “You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. What? Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?” (Job 2:10). He was able to maintain eternal perspective. Yes, he did not understand the whole picture but he was able to maintain his integrity and faithfulness to God. He continues to trust God in spite of everything. He wants to meet God and put his case to him to show him how unfair it all is. He expresses his absolute confidence that God will vindicate him, no matter what happens
In his Book, “disappointment with God”, Philip Yancey, talks about a man called Douglas, who had been a trained psychotherapist, whose wife diagnosed with breast cancer and later in the middle of life struggle, they were involved in a serious traffic accident smashed by a drank driver. Douglas’s twelve-year-old daughter went through the windshield and was badly lacerated in the face. The worst part was he lost his vision and could no longer read. When the Philip Yancey sat down with him for the interview this what Douglas said, “You know, Philip, I learned a long time ago and especially through this accident not to confuse God with life. Is life unfair? You bet. My life has been unfair. What has happened to my wife, what has happened to my daughter, what has happened to me, it’s unfair. But I think God feels exactly the same way. I think He is grieved and hurt by what that drunk driver did as much as I am. Don’t confuse God with life.” He said, “As I read the Bible, especially the Old Testament, I notice that those people were able to separate the physical reality of their lives from the spiritual reality of their relationship with God.”The day I read that, I said wow! That is incredible.
Sometimes we have this impression that if we follow God, nothing will ever go wrong. As long as we have Jesus, our problems are taken care of. We think we can live in a free-worry and free-trouble zone. However, there is no such a thing called “green zone” in a Christian life. Our life is under a constant battle with the unseen spiritual reality. The scripture is clear about our constant battle with the flesh, the devil, and the world. God never promises us we life a quite peaceful life but he promises us that he never to leave us alone in our struggle. He will always be with us in the difficulties and disappointments of life, helping us through them, rather than taking us away from them. We live in a fallen world, and are often personally affected by the sins and failings of other people. Yes, it is a life long battle, but we can rest assured that in Christ we do have the victory. The victory is inevitable.
The reality of suffering or disappointment shakes our faith, makes us bitter, and distorted our vision and purpose. It also creates all kinds of questions. We question God’s ability, his presence, and his faithfulness. However, unless we learned how to handle our life struggles and disappointments we end up in a great pain and another disappointment. We need to separate our relationship that we have with God and “not confused it with the physical life.”
Let’s focus on God’s true character. But this doesn’t mean also denying the reality. Never do that. God wants you to be honest. Tell him what you feel. Show him where it hurts. But allow him to heal you and gives you strength. In every situation you have given the ability to endure and grow stronger despite the number of setbacks, challenges and obstacles. It is your choice. Life’s circumstances can either make you bitter or better. But if you remain committed to the promises of God, promises that help you move on, you’ll avoid getting bitter and you’ll get better even while you are going through a difficult times.
On this earth, we will face disappointment, hardships and persecution, but this life is not everything. We are only here for a little while; we have an eternal hope of glory, where there will be no more pain (Rev 21:3-4). And “We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose” (Rom 8:28), we need to stand on the promises of God, “Wait on the LORD; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the LORD!” (Psalm 27:14). He tells us that he can be “our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in times of trouble.” The Apostle Paul says in 2 Cor.4: 8-9, “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” As a Christian, we have the strength to endure any circumstances because we have the Spirit of God inside us and He is giving us the strength. So, the more pressure we feel, the more God’s strength will rise up inside each one of us. The Bible talks about things like being filled with all the fullness of God, and He is able to make you stand, and strengthened with all might according to His glorious power that works in us.
When we go thorough difficult times and disappointments we can react to them with a different perspective and with a strength that is not our own. No problem has the capacity to be insurmountable to God. He is bigger than all the problems that can hit us, and we are not left alone to deal with them. Life, for all its beauty, comes with pain – it comes with disappointment, with despair, with sadness, and shock. Honestly, life is messy. But, we have God’s highest promise which is he will be with us always be present – whether it’s during our highest high or in the depths of our darkest Sheol. God is never absent, but he always is present. He will never disappoint us; it is our idea of what God is and should be doing and how God should act will disappoint us. In God there is no disappointment, Romans 5:5.
Eyob B Kassa
March 1, 2011