‘God, I cannot handle this Christian thing, I cannot handle the struggle. My life was so much better in my past life. I have done my best to please you, fleeing away from evil desires in my youth, trashing what is not fit in your eyes. I have against all odds proclaimed your name far and wide. I have brought more to you, teaching and walking with them in this path. I have prayed for strength, faith and patience. I have prayed for the strong will to endure the raging storms but instead things just go from bad to worse. I have more problems than before and you seem not to care. Have you turned a blind eye on me? I give my all LORD, can’t you see? Why have you forsaken me? Why are you never there? Are you happy as I undergo all this? You say you have given me the courage and strength to undergo all these but where is it? Should I turn to sin because my life was much better then? You say you alone know the plans you have for me which are plans to bring me prosperity and not disaster but why am I in a crisis? You say you chose me out of the world and you have given me all that pertains to life and godliness but why am I doubting you? Why am I having the thought that you do not exist? Why am I the only imperfect being among those around me? Why are other people’s lives so much better than mine? Why do sinners and unbelievers look at me in despair? In jeer and scorn of my choice of way of life?’
Isaiah 45:9 New Living Translation (NLT)
“What sorrow awaits those who argue with their Creator. Does a clay pot argue with its maker? Does the clay dispute with the one who shapes it, saying,
‘Stop, you’re doing it wrong!’
Does the pot exclaim,
‘How clumsy can you be?’
How do you treat God when things in your life don’t go according to your plan? Do you argue with Him using logic, blame, or coercion?
I have blamed God severally for raging winds in my life. I have cursed, sinned and felt hopeless because of a curve in the normal course of my life. I have retracted to my past sinful way of life maybe thinking I was hurting God. I have treated God as a human being, blaming Him for all the bad things happening in my life and constantly asking Him why he has forsaken me; but you know what, it is allowed to ask God why; but not blame Him using your own thinking. Jesus, while on the cross asked His father, “Why have you forsaken me?”
About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).
Jesus was crying out in anguish because of the separation He now experienced from His heavenly Father for the first and only time in all of eternity. It is the only time of which we have record that Jesus did not address God as Father. Because the Son had taken sin upon Himself, the Father turned His back.
In Psalms 22, David cries out to the LORD asking Him why he has forsaken him. Why he is scorned and despised by all asking if he is truly the one who relies on God. They even go further to mock him saying, let his God save him.
1 My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me,
so far from my cries of anguish?
2 My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer,
by night, but I find no rest.
3 Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One;
you are the one Israel praises.
4 In you our ancestors put their trust;
they trusted and you delivered them.
5 To you they cried out and were saved;
in you they trusted and were not put to shame.
6 But I am a worm and not a man,
scorned by everyone, despised by the people.
7 All who see me mock me;
they hurl insults, shaking their heads.
8 “He trusts in the Lord,” they say,
“let the Lord rescue him.
Let him deliver him,
since he delights in him.”
A friend told me that if there are no struggles, no fights and challenges in my life that means that the devil has already won. I was bitter in my new journey, I would spend hours in my balcony crying to the LORD in anguish; asking Him why everything in my life is just so going wrong. Why there is a dark cloud in my life, why am this and not that, why everything I pray for does not work out while doors open for those I intercede for. I was so negative and hating. So down struck and hopeless. I went quiet.
There was this inner voice that came to me; swift, mellow and honeyed. It was fruity and full of life. It journeyed me to my past reminding of all the things that I have been praying for. It sailed me to vast thoughts of those I care for, lives of people around me, what I do and my deepest desires. It then drove its way to the things that I have never prayed for.
I realized that almost ALL the things I have were as a result of a prayer I gave a while back. I then thought of all the people I envy. I assumed their lives and there was this big resistance that I couldn’t be them whatsoever. Most of the people I envied have no talents like me, some do not have the respect I have earned through the years, some are not as charismatic and some are not as hardworking and creative. I realized I only envied their worldly life. I envied the lives they mirror to the world. I retracted to thoughts of quite a number telling me how they would like to be me, how they would like to be as talented and creative and how they would do anything to live a life like mine.
It came to my senses that the same way I envy other people’s lives is the same way other people envy my life. I realized that everyone in this world has got struggles, the brightest ones choose to show their happy parts and their strongholds while the dumb choose to tell everyone their problems showing how life is unfair to them, how they hate their lives and would die wishing being like some people etc. I knew that I wouldn’t want to be like anyone I envied, I knew that I envied their worldly life and not specifically their characters. I learned many things; That the only person that I should always strive to be is MORE than me; ‘Am I still the same person I was yesterday, a month ago or a year ago?’ That the only person I should always try to compete with is myself! I knew that no one has the same talents I have, the same creativity, the same strengths nor the same resilience, I SHOULD QUIT WANTING TO BE SOMEONE ELSE; I am made perfect in his image.
I looked at the world around me and I thought of the things I have never prayed for. I thought (and God forbid) am young, with a good job but maybe I am servicing a huge payment of my mum’s, my brother’s or my sister’s medical bill. I thought of any of my family members bedridden, in pain and all they had is me to take care of them; will I be enjoying life as I do now? I thought of any tragedy and thought of NOW! I learned outright that I should quit getting bitter with my life as He alone knows the plans He has for me. He alone keeps well those that I love, He alone answers the prayers I have never bothered to pray.
I then thought of the street kids coiled in the streets every morning as I walk to work. I was reminiscent of this mother who I find every morning preparing her kids for school; on the streets. I thought of the cold, the lack of basic needs and I went before God apologetic of my thoughts and words thanking Him for life and the needs that He provides even when I do not deserve them.
The Bible assures in 2nd Timothy 3:12 that;
In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.
Jesus again says in John 15:18-19
18 “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. 19 The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.
So am I going to suffer eternally in this world? Should I sin so that the devil would not be fighting with me? Most people believe that Christians have got more trouble than sinners. They believe that in sinning, you don’t get as much trouble as Christians. They forget that once you become a sinner, the devil owns you, he controls you, he entices you into the worldly, uses you and does away with you therefore completing his task; to steal, kill and destroy. But there is hope for those who trust in Him as Jesus says in John 15:26-27
26 “But I will send you the Advocate—the Spirit of truth. He will come to you from the Father and will testify all about me. 27 And you must also testify about me because you have been with me from the beginning of my ministry.
I am renewed in hope that I will have an advocate. Just as the spirit of truth came to me in thought while I was ranting about my hopeless life, I am also in awe when He said that I MUST also TESTIFY about Him because I have been with Him from the beginning of His ministry -exactly what am doing in this post.
As a Christian, you have to have people who strengthen you in faith, you have to fellowship with people who worship in truth and in spirit (John 4:24). In Acts 14; Paul and Barnabas strengthen believers and they assure them that it is not going to be a smooth ride;
21 After preaching the Good News in Derbe and making many disciples, Paul and Barnabas returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch of Pisidia, 22 where they strengthened the believers. They encouraged them to continue in the faith, reminding them that we must suffer many hardships to enter the Kingdom of God.
They say, if you don’t have ups and downs in your life then you do not have a pulse and we well know that anything with no pulse is dead. Quit living a dead life, a life where you are married to the world, consoling yourself that you are having fun and are living life to the fullest.
2nd Timothy 2:22
Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.
From a post I wrote a little earlier, Jon Jorgenson says “The question is not, ‘Who’s going to answer my prayer?’ rather the question is ‘Whose prayer is God going to use me to answer? The calling that God placed on your heart is God calling you to be the light in someone else’s darkness, to be their hope in their hopelessness, to be their comfort in their despair, to be their spark in their revolution and to be the joy in their sadness. That’s God calling you to be the answer in somebody else’s prayer!”
Ever felt like quitting? You are not alone? I have done that tons of times. Ever felt left out? Forsaken? Feeling like God has turned deaf? It happens. Remember the pot doesn’t ask the potter, ‘How clumsy can you be?’
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