“You may be fighting a difficult fight now, but be assured, victory is coming.” The voice was calm and comforting. The words were encouraging and hopeful. Yet, I was strangely bothered as they came out of my car radio’s speakers last Sunday morning.
His assurance made me wonder. What fight am I fighting? And is God in this fight with me or is he fighting a totally different battle?
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying God is uninterested in our pain. He’s concerned and involved in every detail of our lives. However, it’s tempting to think that the primary challenges we face are about finances or health or relationships or problems at work or grades or a hundred other issues, but I’m not sure any of those are the primary issue for God. While my entire focus is on those things that will give me comfort and security, God has a deeper call—one that will fill me with joy regardless of my level of personal comfort.
What if God is content to allow me to suffer ill health because it will put me into close contact with a medical technician who needs to hear about Jesus? What if God’s plan includes bringing me to the brink of bankruptcy (or beyond) so I can encourage the paralegal not to give up praying for her husband? What if God wants to turn my current relational conflicts into rich fodder for helping young couples in rocky marriages years from now?
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. (Isaiah 55:8)
I would hate to make it through the valley of sickness, poverty, conflict, or whatever other challenges I might face, only to discover that I totally missed what God was doing in the midst of the battle. All the while I was fighting to get out of the valley, he was preparing a great feast there for me. One in which I could enjoy the richness of his grace by sharing it with those around me.
In lieu of a comments section Intersekt accepts and publishes letters to the editor. If you would like to write a letter to the editor, you can do so here.