Yesterday, I felt like I had been punched in the gut.
Circumstances were going one way and then in a totally unforeseen twist, they went another.
If I am honest, I experienced all of these emotions: anger, confusion, irritation, extreme frustration, bewilderment, disappointment and sadness. And maybe a teeny tiny desire for revenge on the person who was causing all the trouble.
Have you ever felt that way?
What is a Christian to do when God allows something that He could have prevented and you have no idea what He is doing?
First of all, pour out your heart to Him. Be brutally honest. He can take it. He knows what is in our hearts already. Unless you get it all out, it will fester and twist and morph into bitterness, which only pleases the enemy and poisons a soul.
In fact, 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to, “Cast the whole of your care (all of your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all), on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.”
In the original language, the word “cast” means “to throw.” The connotation is of just hurling a thing as hard as you can onto something else. It is a very deliberate, decisive action.
In this case, you are not throwing your cares into a void. You are throwing them right onto the strong and everlasting shoulders of Jesus, who is the only source of true Help and Hope.
And what do you get back in return? Not condemnation, not rebuke, not shame.
This is what you receive:
Grace (spiritual blessing and favor), mercy, and [heart] peace [be yours] from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. —1 Timothy 1:2
Time and time again, we see the giving character of our magnificent God in His Word. He is not in any way stingy. He does not give grudgingly. He gives lavishly, extravagantly, abundantly, exceedingly more than all we could ask or imagine.
This verse tells us that grace, mercy and peace flow to us from His good, kind and merciful heart.
Let’s look at the definitions of each in the original Greek.
Grace: that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness, good will, kindness and favor; the merciful kindness of God, benefit, bounty, the absolutely free expression of lovingkindness of God to men
Mercy: kindness, goodwill towards the miserable and afflicted, joined with a desire to help them
Peace: the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ and so fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatever sort that is.
THIS is the heart of God toward you, even when you are hurting, angry and resentful.
It is this type of relentless, perfect divine love that melts the hardest heart, causes bitterness to evaporate, turns complaints into gratitude, forges steel into a trembling soul, grants courage to the faint-hearted and gives abundant grace that allows one who has fallen to get back up in the powerful Name of the One who defeated death.
And in the process, the enemy’s plan is thwarted. This enemy of our souls is rendered helpless, powerless and revealed to be the loser he truly is.
Whatever valley you may be walking through this day, do not allow your circumstances to obliterate your view of your Savior. He is there. He is at work in ways you cannot see. He promises to work all things to your good. He will never stop doing good to you. He brings beauty from the ashes.
Rather than suffer and die in the desert of human reasoning, out-of-control emotions and consuming worry, pull up stakes and place yourself under the waterfall of His never-ending, endless rush of GRACE.
Then take His hand and walk side by side with Him along the path that He has chosen (with great love and care) for you to walk.
Right now, at this very moment, grace, mercy and peace from the throne of God are streaming into your life with such a tremendous deluge that it makes Niagara Falls look like a trickle .
You are safe in Him.
Believe it. Receive it. Watch Him work.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. —Joshua 1:9