Trusting God When You Don’t Understand
We all have moments in life where we get stressed, doubtful, and start to question God’s timing and plans. We think thoughts like “No God, I’m pretty sure you got this part of my life wrong; this isn’t how it’s supposed to go.” …As if our plans for our life are better than God’s. For me, there have been countless times where those thoughts raced through my head and I’ve doubted God. I’m going to tell you a sad story, but don’t work yourself up and get sad, because it gets better and happy at the end.
When my Dad took the position to be a professor here 6 years ago, I never thought that my family would be separated for 6 years. We never thought it would take 6 years to sell our house in Illinois. Our church prayed faithfully, and we along with our family and friends prayed faithfully, asking God “When will our family be together again? When will we sell this house? When are you going to come through for me, God?” Silence. Days turned into weeks, weeks into months, months into years. It felt like God wasn’t listening to our cries, but he was; he was at work changing my heart and teaching me things. Fast forward to November 2015 when our house finally sold and that meant our family could all be together living in the same state again soon. I don’t know why it took 6 years, but God was still sovereign. He taught me patience and that HIS timing and HIS plans are always perfect and for our good. Some might be thinking “Cool story bro, but there are times where God doesn’t answer prayer and the ending isn’t that happy.” And you are right. I have had family and friends that have passed from terminal illnesses and wondered why didn’t God answer this prayer. Why did they die? Why didn’t he come through? God gives and takes away. It’s not our job to understand why God does what he does. His timing and plans are not always going to be our desired timing and plans. God might not answer your prayer right away, he might not always heal that family member or friend with a terminal illness, or give you that job, relationship, or house you’ve been praying for, but He is still a good God and we shouldn’t question him. His understanding surpasses all and frankly, he does not owe us anything because he created us and we are his. He knows what we need and when we need things. Romans 8:28 reads “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Seasons of pain, confusion, and sadness are inevitable; that is life, but those are the times where God grows us and we finally see not only that we are not in control of our lives, but that we never were. God never wastes pain. Trusting in God is not knowing what our future holds, but knowing who holds our future: a good God that knows what we need and when we need it.
Next time you are in a season of confusion, pain, or doubt remember that God is sovereign, he is good, and he is listening. His plans and timing will always be better than anything we could think of. Be patient, be still, and know that he is a great God who loves you; he will never leave you, and he is always working all things for our good.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” –Proverbs 3:5-6