I was talking with a co-worker the other day, who is usually very bubbly, happy, and jokes around, and she was very quiet. We work from home so we talk in a private chat throughout the day. I decided to check in on her and she said she was just in a very bad mood and just wanted to survive the work day. I didn't want to pry if she didn't want to talk about it, but I felt in my spirit to try to speak some encouraging words to her, which had everything to do with what God's word says, "Trouble doesn't last always....Nothing we go through is for nothing, God is there and he knows and is there to help."
Her response to this made me recoil..."I don't wanna hear that (expletive), I don't even believe in that (expletive) anymore." Even though it was over-chat, I felt the acid and anger in her words. It kind of hurt me really, because I couldn't imagine not being receptive to something like that. Then I had to remember not everyone has had the encounter with God that I have. Not everyone has had the foundation in God that I have and not everyone has the relationship with God that I have.
Later, we did speak over the phone and she gave me the whole rundown of her problem, and it was very heavy. I understood her anger and vehemence, but it didn't change my belief. I began to re-iterate to her what I had said earlier and the question she posed to me was "What could God possibly be trying to show me by putting me through this?" It's a fair question, a common one, and a question I have asked Him myself many times. I never speak about anything that I have not experienced myself and so when I am ministering to people, I tell them about every aspect of who I have come to learn who God is and how he operates.
I have learned that even though God will answer such a question as "why," he is not obligated to tell us anything. We on the other hand are required to have faith in Him and trust in him that even though the road is rough, and the situation looks hopeless, he is our hope. We have to believe that his word is true when he says "ALL things work together for the good of those who love him." Romans 8:28 "I will NEVER leave you or forsake you."Deut. 31 6-8 I think we believe God is a Genie sometimes. That because we are believers, and we pray and tithe and fast, when we ask for something it just appears. It can happen that way if it aligns with God's purpose for your life. But I have realized that sometimes we are not ready for some of the things we ask God for.
I heard Steve Harvey say once "You have to make room and prepare for what you are asking God for." We have to go through a refining process, so God can shape us and mold us into the people we need to be, not just to get what we want but also so that we can't give credit to anybody else for providing it but him. Refining through God is a painful process. You have to be ready to give up and sacrifice some things, lose things and people, to grow and mature beyond what you're are comfortable with... I just came out of the most painful situation I have ever gone through, and one day when God says it is time, I will tell the tale but I was almost homeless. Not through any fault of my own, but when my husband died, his affairs were not in order and I had to leave my home of 16 years.
So I'm working, packing, looking for a home to buy, (Rent is too high with two large dogs) with no down payment, closing money...nothing. I didn't have time to grieve or anything. I was exhausted, emotional and mentally a wreck, and discouraged. I cried out to God many times in desperation and anger. No one could help me but Him. And...God is ALWAYS on time. I not only found a home but qualified for a grant for closing costs and the down payment!
The relief and gratitude I felt from these miracles, yes miracles, was so great that I wake up every morning with thanksgiving on my lips for God's grace and favor. Especially since he didn't have to do it for me, but I am eternally grateful. Daily it makes me acknowledge just how blessed me and my fur babies truly are.
I am not sure if anything I said to my co-worker stuck with her, but what I do know is, if you want to know who God really is and how he can move in your life, you have to invite him in, you have to submit to his will, you have to live the way he requires us to live and be prepared for the refining...it's not easy, but let me be the one to tell you, it is worth it. I would not take away any of the hardships, struggles, heartaches, or rough patches I went through to get to where I am in Christ today. The reassurance I have, the peace I have, the joy I have gained, and the healing I have received were worth every minute. And I know he is not done. There will be more trouble, but I know who my God is and what he can do.
So whatever you are believing Him for, hoping for, or praying for, just remember, put Him first in everything you do, thank Him for everything you already have, be good stewards of what He has already given you, and He will add the rest. Matthew 6:33