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Sunday, March 22, 2015

When God Doesn’t Give Us What We Want

Pointless faith seems if Jesus doesn’t give us what the ‘desires of our hearts’ call for. Wrong, dead wrong.
In a recent sermon, the Senior Pastor (Jackie Smoker) at the church I serve in said:
“Saying yes to important things, like family, sometimes means saying no to things we desperately want.”
We all want a self-fashioned Jesus who will help us have the things we can’t survive without. But until we try to survive without them, we don’t know that we can. Indeed, we might even thrive in the subjection of our desires!
There are touchstones of desire we all have that may be thoroughly good for us, which also don’t meet God’s will for us. Perhaps it’s a season of life where it’s inappropriate for us to acquire the thing we hanker for. Sometimes God has a slightly different direction for us to journey in. Maybe we are asked by the Holy Spirit to be the guide for someone who needs us, against our will when we would rather go another way. Then again, it’s something we are sure should be ours now.
We become incredibly frustrated for a time. There is a season of inner irritation welling up to the brooding of incongruence. We step out of step with God so we can nurture the desire that seems just out of grasp. We keep passively (or actively) after it. We keep insisting in our own ‘obedient’ stubbornness (thinking the Spirit still wants for us what we want) that everything will turn out. And we are so adamant that we may not admit to ourselves that we are at crossed purposes to the Divine.
What are we to do with the fact that not everything turns out as we would have liked it to? Are we to reject God? Should we keep going our own sweet way? Is the road to our own damnation paved in the bricks of grace — will we expect God to understand our wilfulness?
If Jesus didn’t get his own way, there will be times when we won’t get our own way.
Still, what are we to do?
There is nothing shorter nor longer than acceptance as the perfect measure for the attaining to of God’s will.
Acceptance of God’s obvious will—the putting first of others—is the blessedness of faith, for faith accepts what cannot be changed.
And, finally, we shall see that faith is the most blessed activity of all!
© 2015 S. J. Wickham.

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