God tells us His thoughts and ways are above us, so far above both our thoughts of how life should work and our ways of responding to life’s challenges that how He operates is “far beyond anything you could imagine” (Isaiah 55: 8 NLT). And yet our ubiquitous attitude of entitlement is inclined to reduce our expectations of a loving and good God to fit our reasonable desires for how God should behave.
Many sincere followers of Christ, like all of us with an alive and sometimes unrecognized attitude of entitlement, run headlong into a thick wall of frustration and disappointment when, despite fervent prayer, unexplainable and unanticipated difficulties rise up in our lives. And time changes nothing. The loss of a much-valued blessing finds no compensation in the absent provision of an even more highly valued blessing. What then?
Doubts pester our minds and disturb our rest. An unwelcome question slips into our mind: “God, I know You’re good. But right now, in this difficult time, I don’t know what You’re good for”. As near as we can tell, God sometimes provides no relief for our fears and no filling of our emptiness. And familiar temptations become seductive. We seek to calm our fears and feel more content through our own arrangements.
Arranging for our own satisfaction, whether through obviously or subtly sinful means, seems warranted. Oswald Chambers once said that the root of all sin is the suspicion that God isn’t good. Every Christian at some point will face a circumstance when God’s ways make no sense. It is then the crossroad will become clear: either doubt and rebel or trust and obey. The choice, sometimes very difficult, is ours to make.
Dr. Larry Crabb is a well-known psychologist, Bible teacher, speaker, popular author, and founder/director of NewWay Ministries. He is currently scholar in residence at Colorado Christian University in Denver and visiting professor of spiritual formation for Richmont Graduate University in Atlanta. Dr. Crabb and his wife, Rachael, live in North Carolina.
Visit NewWayMinistries.org for more information.
Read more from Dr. Crabb in When God’s Ways Make No Sense, available now wherever books are sold.
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