I wonder that myself sometimes, don’t you?
There are days that seem to glow from the moment the sun rises, beams streaming from between the buildings or the hills — depending on where you live — and the satisfaction of a beautiful day settles into your conscience as you descend into sleep that night.
But there are also days when you can’t stop stumbling over yourself, when the mire you slog through is thigh deep, and by the end of the day you’re certain you’re further behind and twice as tired as the day before.
These somewhat bipolar sentiments are not unique to unbelievers. Asaph, who happened to write the 74th Psalm in the Bible, examines his situation, and all he sees is endless misery.
God has written him off, he says.
The “enemy”, those who stand against God, is in destruction mode. They’ve mocked the Lord and ransacked His places of worship.
The prophets are missing in action; no one talks of God, and no one seems to know what’s coming.
In short, life is miserable.
Is it okay for you to feel this way?
I think a lot of Christians have been brainwashed into believing that we’re supposed to be happy (which differs from being joyful) all the time like clockwork. We’re supposed to come to church and nod and shake hands and act like everything is cool when the week could not have gone more wrong.
But was Jesus not exceedingly sorrowful before His death? Did Paul not constantly agonize and grieve over the unbelieving Jews who dwelt among him? Was not Job justifiably troubled in his plight?
The believing Christian will face trouble, suffering, and great sorrow. I believe this is guaranteed; there is nothing in the Bible that promises otherwise until heaven is our dwelling place.
Questioning God is a natural reaction. “Where are you? What are you doing? And why does this hurt so much?” If this isn’t happening, you’re faking it.
Don’t be afraid to question God. It means you desire His presence in your life. It means you recognize your situation as too much to handle. And at the very least, you’re addressing Him.
This is cool and all, but you can’t stay here forever. After a time, we must move on. Asaph does. Now it’s your turn.
REMEMBER WHAT HE HAS DONE
Christians tend to have a really bad memory. We sing to God about how great He is every Sunday, and then we’re hating life like He doesn’t even exist by Monday morning.
You don’t need to make things up, either. We like to say God has “really blessed me” and we don’t even know what we’re referring to.
What about the fact that you got up this morning, and that your heart is still beating? He wants you alive for a reason. Start there. I’m sure you can come up with some more after that. Asaph came up with all sorts of stuff, and he didn’t even have the new iPhone.
GOD CAN TAKE CARE OF BUSINESS
When we question God, we are concerned that He cannot reach our personal issues.
When you’re in a good mood, we recognize the simple truth that God takes care of us. He created the earth, He sustains all things, blah blah. However, it’s worth a reminder when you’re going through hard times: God has your back, and everything will work out.
GIVE IT BACK
Now that you’ve have your bout with sadness, it’s time to stop being a control freak. If you understand that God is truly powerful and all-knowing and so forth, then you should also recognize that this includes power and wisdom beyond your capacity.
So give Him the control back. He has a track record of success. Those enemies? They’re easier to topple than the Cowboys defense to God.
If you’re questioning God, don’t be ashamed. It isn’t inherently sinful to wonder what is going on. But may we be encouraged to continue leaning upon Him as we navigate this difficult life until He delivers us, in this life or otherwise.