What If You Need To Forgive God…?
If we are honest, we all have that one experience in our life that we would love to ask God about. In fact, it’s really just one question most of us would ask:
That question has a deeper meaning for some more than others. I mean, we can all look back at our lives and wish God would have allowed some things to pass us by, but he didn’t. We had to live through them. We had to feel every ounce of pain, sorrow, or hurt they caused. For some of us it was at the hands of someone we loved and trusted. For others, you caused yourself a lot of pain and now you’re full of regret.
One question still lingers in our heart of hearts; God, why did you let this happen to me?
This is a real and raw question to ask. But no matter how many times we whisper, cry, or scream this question up to the clouds, we will never know the answer. Still, it’s that very fact that causes some of us to callous our hearts to God and blame him for all the things that have gone horribly wrong in our lives.
We often hear the Good News about God forgiving our sins or giving us a clean slate to start our lives new again, but today I want to propose a different thought to entertain. For the New Year, I want us to wrestle with the idea that we need to forgive God…
GOD, YOU DID THIS TO ME…
Some of us were fortunate to come from a good family where mom and dad worked together to try and provide, love, and care for their children, but some of us were not so fortunate.
I’ve heard the stories of some people who have traveled from foster home to foster home being raped or molested at every home they entered. I’ve heard stories of children being neglected and abused by their parents. Some would go days without eating a single meal or go hours locked in closets or basements.
On the flip side of things, I’ve heard stories of young people who come from seemingly perfect families that had very dark secrets. One in particular comes to mind; a young girl with both of her parents at home to take care of her and her brother. She had the basic necessities in place to survive, but what she lacked was attention and care from her parents. Because she was being bullied at school and her parents wouldn’t pay attention to her cries for help, she saw only one way out; she took her own life.
A 14 Year Old girl commits suicide because no one stepped in to help.
Regardless of which side of things you come from, we all have struggled or wrestled with ugly things in our lives. Of course we wish they would never have taken place, but they did.
And the biggest lie we can tell ourselves is “God did this to me!” This does several things to us that have massive impacts on the trajectory of our lives.
It keeps us stuck pointing the finger.
The next time will always be like last time until we own our piece of the equation. Whether it be relationally, academically, or emotionally, we have to own our part in things. After all, we are the common denominator. You show up in every relationship, in every business decision, in every stage or season of your life. Depending in how deep the hurt is, that will determine how hard it will be for you to own your part, but don’t choose to be defined by what happened to you. Rise up!
It brings our past into our future.
As long as your are pointing the finger, you will always smuggle your past into your future. How long will you let that continue? How long will you let your past dictate what happens in your future? You’ll find yourself bringing these same habits into every relationship, every friendship, every business venture, or every new church. All new chapters in your life will start with “I decided”. Decide today to own your part of the equation, to not smuggle your past into your future, and to forgive God.
GOD, DID YOU REALLY DO THIS TO ME…?
In short. NO.
God didn’t do any of this to you. People did these things to you and you did these things to you. I know that’s a tough pill to swallow, but it’s a vital one.
It’s easy to blame God for all the things that go wrong in our lives. Especially if you believe that he exists. Isn’t it funny how that works? When we believe that God is real, we subconsciously feel entitled to certain things in life. This automatically means that our lives should be smooth and easy going. We shouldn’t have to face any tragedy in life. We shouldn’t have to go through any hardships. But the reality is that we will face tragedy, we will face hardships and difficult times, and we will experience loss and pain.
Such is the circle of life. No one is exempt.
Now, I realize that this causes more questions to arise. I fought with this truth too.
I can write an entire thesis on the theology of man’s free will versus God’s sovereignty but that isn’t what got me answers. When I began to cast aside all of my idles (things that distract me) and began to reflect internally, that was when I started to see myself clearly.
ASK YOURSELF “WHAT AM I LIVING FOR?”
At some point in our lives, we have asked ourselves that simple question. It’s rare that we pause our busy lives long enough to come up with an answer. Contrary to popular belief, growth does not come naturally and experience does not make you wiser. Growth requires us to be intentional about developing ourselves and evaluating our experiences.
Evaluated experience makes you wiser.
This is something that takes time and attention, but if you invest in moments to reflect, to evaluate, and plan for a better future, you will have a better future. It also gives God the room in your life to do what only He can do; give you purpose.
GOD, I FORGIVE YOU…
God wants to do exceedingly and abundantly more than we can ask or imagine.
God wants to bless us, in fact, he already has. This does not mean that God is some sort of genie in a bottle that grants our every wish, but it means that God always has our well-being in mind despite our present circumstances not looking like that is the case.
For example, most of us are familiar with the story of Mary and Joseph, the parents of Jesus. We all know that Mary was pregnant by the Holy Spirit and was due to give birth to a son and name him Jesus. Well, before an angel appeared to Joseph and told him about what was going on, Joseph was thinking a lot like how we would today at finding out your virgin wife is pregnant.
She cheated on me!
How could she betray me like that?
How could God allow this to happen to me?
That’s a lot like our thought process when we go through some challenging things in our lives. We try to figure things out. Unfortunately, in comparison to all of eternity, we have such a narrow view of what is really going on. Our perspective isn’t the same as God’s perspective. That means that God can have a greater purpose behind what is seemingly meant to destroy you. All we have to do is stop long enough to listen to his voice.
Joseph looked at his situation from the outside-in and assumed all the wrong things about his virgin wife, Mary. What looked like a tragedy at first, God was working behind the scenes to bring about the Savior of the world. He chose to wait long enough to hear God speak to him, he chose to believe God had his well-being in mind, and he chose to trust that God could work this horrible situation into something miraculous.
I wonder what are some things in your life that you see from the outside-in? What are some tragedies in your life that God can use and turn into something miraculous? Will you stop smuggling your past into your future? Will you no longer be defined by your past? I think this new year can have amazing results if you decide today to forgive God…