Where are You, God?
We all know this question! Each of us has asked it, probably more times than we count. We find ourselves caught in a tough situation, suffering from a loss, not getting that promotion, dealing with a breakup, not getting that new car we wanted, or even things as trivial as stubbing our toe or not being able to sleep. It has become as much a part of our lives as breathing; to those who call themselves the children of God, anyway.
We want things to go our way, on our time, and leave no room for patience because “It’s just not fair, God!”
There is no doubt that this generation is a “gimme” generation, full of self-exaltation and over-opinionated as they come. No one is to blame but we ourselves. The arguments of poor parenting, lack of discipline, and so on can certainly be made! In the end, however, each of us are able to choose the way in which conduct ourselves. I am a 27 year old man, I will be 28 in only a handful of days, and my dad has done a great job at raising me! Though it may have been tough when my mom was diagnosed with cancer, and even more so when she passed away, he did his best to raise his sons! The man that I am now is certainly, in part, his doing but ultimately the decision was mine to either live in the self-destructive manner that I was or to turn away from it and gain a life; one that I couldn’t have imagined ever living had I continued in the lifestyle that I was living in, which was also my choice!
I look around me, and on the television and internet and I see a people who so quick to point the blame at others when things aren’t going their way; eager to make someone or something else be the reason they’re not getting anywhere! It breaks my heart that so many people are so self absorbed that they have no concept of doing wrong themselves; as though they are a gift to this world that is only hindered by others’ unwillingness to do their bidding at their demand. I liken it to an infant crying for milk.
What then is the real issue? It is certainly easier to blame others, and God, rather than to take responsibility for our own actions and the consequences that follow. It’s like gravity, what goes up.. You will assuredly reap what you sow!
The issue, contemptible as it is, is that rebellion reigns in the church more than righteousness! People would more willingly say that “we are all sinners,” completely opposing the Word of God they say that they serve, which says we are “dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” A generation of recalcitrant children who want the blessings of God without performing the obedience that He demands; as though they have somehow overlooked His Word on the matter, which says that a double-minded person is “unstable in all their ways,” and that “Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord!”
We are undoubtedly told to be obedient! Not only told, it is commanded! Have we forgotten what a commandment is? If that is the case, a commandment is this: A rule that is to be observed strictly. It is not a request, a whispered desire for us to do something! It is a demand, full of gravity and upheld by the full authority of God! Have we forgotten that God is also a jealous and an angry God Who will not tolerate disobedience, nor reward those who are disobedient and double-minded; which are both the same thing, in reality, to be disobedient is to be mindful of God and the world and not devoted to His way alone.
He calls this “lukewarm,” and says of this very thing that “I know your deeds; you are neither cold nor hot. How I wish you were one or the other. So because you are lukewarm — neither hot nor cold — I am about to spit you out of My mouth!” (REVELATION 3:15-16) God makes it no secret that He delights in those who are obedient and will be a terrible thing to behold for those who are not, (EPHESIANS 5:6/COLOSSIANS 3:6) and it is “a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” (HEBREWS 10:31)
Instead of speaking these things and saying, “Why me, God?” or getting upset when things do not go your way, try living His way! Instead of seeking things that suit your own desires, try letting Him show you what is good to desire! Instead of living in accusation and grievance, pointing the blame elsewhere and never being satisfied, try practicing obedience! It WILL alter the way that you view and live your life!
There is weight behind the words, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” (ROMANS 12:2) It is a weight that can be felt, experienced, and that has an actual affect on our lives; an affect that is the effect of living an obedient, focused, and determined life!
He told us how to do it, how to live an obedient and perfect life! He gave us a path to follow, Jesus Christ, Who said “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (JOHN 14:6) so that we would understand that as long as we set our “minds on things above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.. on things above and not on things on the earth,” (COLOSSIANS 3:1-2) we cannot stumble or fail, and we will not experience the dread of this world!
We have no value in the things of this world, because though we live in this world we are not part of this world, and trying to live as though we are causes turmoil in our spirit; so that we are at enmity with ourselves, incapable of maintaining focus on the direction that we are called to which is Jesus Christ! This is why he goes on to say, through Paul, in this passage “you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.” (COLOSSIANS 3:3)
When we allow ourselves to be subject to the things of the world, we become a slave of the things of the world. When live as the world lives and conform to its ways, and the ways of those who are a part of it we place ourselves at odds with the very purpose and value that He has placed within us because “the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.” (GALATIANS 5:17)
He is not saying in that scripture that we will never do what we want, rather that if we continue to live double-minded, halfhearted, lukewarm, disobedient lives we will never do what we want because we will always want one and the other, and we cannot have both! You know, “you cannot drink of the Lord’s cup and of the cup of demons.” We are the children of light, as it says in EPHESIANS, and “what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?” (2 CORINTHIANS 6:14)
It is no difficult question to answer, why things do not seem to go our way or why we cannot see God when we feel that He isn’t there. It is because as long as our focus remains divided between God and the world we are not going to see God; Who tells us to come out from among the world and follow His way. Or can you look at what is front of you, and that which is behind you at the same time? Even trying to hold up a mirror and cheat the system would still obstruct your vision in one direction or the other. So let us refrain from remarking on trivial things.
The uncomplicated truth is this: if your eyes are not fixed intently, and only on God, then you should not expect to see anything from Him; whether direction or blessing. Those are His words, not mine or any other man’s, God spoke them. Of course He did not say it in the exact manner that I did, but He certainly makes it easy to understand for those who genuinely search for it.
Instead of crying out in anger and contempt when things do not go our way, on our time, we should be obedient and patient; understanding that where our focus is, that is the direction in which our lives will go. We know that “faith without works is dead, being alone,”and what are the works of faith if not obedience? Faith surely urges us to be obedient! You can look to the numerous examples in the Word and see that every time faith was portrayed it was not alone, but accompanied by obedience in one form or another. One has to have the other, and one cannot remain without the other.
It is on us to maintain what our Father gives us, being good stewards and obedient children. He saved us from sin and death, and released us from the things that held us back. It is our responsibility to live our lives according to that! He commands that we do!
If you’re lost and confused, and you don’t know what to do because you can’t feel God; take your eyes off of the things and the ways of the world and look to Him! If you do so with an honest heart, truly yearning for His direction and willing to be obedient to everything that He commands, you will unquestionably see a change in your life! When you live your life in obedience to Him, change the way that you think and conduct yourself, it will absolutely transform you for the better! We are created to look like Him after all, and not just in the next life but in this life! As He said, “Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.” (1 JOHN 2:6)
Be encouraged! Be joyful! You were created for so much more than turmoil, strife, pain, suffering, and worry! You are so much more than anxiety and stress! You are more than this world, you are a light in this world! Take hold of that truth and run with it like nothing can stop you, because nothing can! Be courageous! Be obedient in a world that is so full of rebellion! Jesus Christ said it best, when He said to “be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly father is perfect.” (MATTHEW 5:48) and “be holy, because I am holy.” (1 PETER 1:16)
Set your eyes on Him and do not do so lightly, seriously fix your sight on Christ and live as He called you to live! He made it easy and gave us a direct path in Christ, Who is the way! As long as our sight is locked on Him we cannot fall off of the path and we will experience a joy in our lives that this world cannot duplicate for all of its endeavoring to do so!
I will leave you with this; “But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. The eye is the lamp of the body. If your vision is clear, your whole body will be full of light.” (MATTHEW 6:20-22) Fix your eyes on Christ and your thoughts, words, and actions will follow suit! When we set our minds on things above, where Christ is, and when we treasure His ways over our own or the ways and the things of the world, our whole body will be full of light!! After all, “at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.” (EPHESIANS 5:8) Live it!