I often struggle with the goodness of God.
I know He is good. I trust He is good. But I don’t understand why He is good to me?
An old adage is “Jesus accepts me for who I am but He loves me too much to leave me that way.”
It’s cliche and trite at times, but it wouldn’t be as popular as it is if it didn’t hold some water. It’s the second half of that sentence that really gets me. He loves me too much to allow me to be complacent and comfortable. He loves me too much to allow me to be less than what He has planned for me.
It gets me every single time.
Instead of deeming me a “lost cause,” He looks at me and makes a plan to make me better. That’s where circumstances come into play. I have spent a great deal of time looking at circumstances and wondering why. I have also spent a great deal of time looking to see how I can change or mold my current position instead of really taking a step back and looking at it all through His eyes.
My new favorite quote is from “Love Does” by Bob Goff. Which by the way, is a must read. I am not an avid reader of devotionals or anything non-fiction, but this books is literally wrecking everything I thought I knew about love and God’s love. Please read it. Plus, he’s hilarious and within the first half of the book he tells a farting story. Clearly the way to my heart.
Anyway, in his book he says “I used to think I could shape the circumstances around me, but now I know Jesus uses circumstances to shape me.”
Talk about a concept that completely shifted my thought processes at the moment. Truthfully, I have experienced a rough month. Things have not gone as planned, and I have spent a lot of time wondering how I can change things. Maybe I’m not meant to change this. Maybe this is all part of becoming who I am meant to be. While I fervently believe that God is perfect and is not the giver of bad gifts, I have also seen that God believes in me more than I believe in myself. I have used the words “I’m done” more in the past two weeks than ever in my life only to be met with God’s patient response of “Not yet.”
I can’t change the circumstances I am in at the moment because I can’t control every small detail or every person in my life. All I can do is pray through it and look to see the lesson in all of it. God uses all things for His glory, and He won’t waste a single moment of my life despite my desperate attempts to.
In the midst of my ugliness and bitterness, He continues to seek me. Instead of backing off and letting me “cool down,” He pushes me to overcome and face the things that threaten to tear me down. He does not delight in my struggles or pain, but He believes in me.
And that’s all part of His goodness. Which I’m still struggling with because I can’t see myself the way He sees me. But in the middle of circumstance of sometimes pain, I see His goodness. I see His love falling down on me and His grace pushing me through it all.