God What Are You Doing?
Matthew 5:1-3 When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”
Some days, following Jesus isn’t easy. In fact some days, it’s downright hard. It involves sacrifice. It involves people misunderstanding you; rejecting you; persecuting you. You were kind of expecting a blessing and God dishes up this rubbish. Really?!
For me, one of the hardest things about following Jesus is just that – God doesn’t always dish up what I expect Him to dish up; what I want Him to dish up. And it’s not just me.
I received an email from a woman in the UK recently, who’d been suffering through some things for years – decades in fact. And basically her question was, “God what are you doing?”
Frankly, I don’t think that’s such an unreasonable question. The Bible talks a lot about God’s love, His mercy, His faithfulness, His blessings for His people. It does. And so this woman who’s been suffering for decades is hurt and confused. She’s losing faith in God – does He really want to bless me?
This is real stuff. This is what goes on in our lives, that’s why we’re talking about it today; this mismatch between our expectations, and what God’s up to. It causes a lot of grief – and that mismatch, I think, makes things feel ten times worse.
Here’s what’s going on. You and I, we’re wired for success. We just are. The world’s taught us, whether on the sporting arena, or in our careers, or what car we drive and what house we live in and which school our children go to, that it’s all about just one thing. Success.
But – and it’s a big “but” – often what God’s doing in our lives that hurts so much, is actually rewiring us for something much better. Blessing. God’s abundant blessing … which as it turns out, isn’t always the same thing as success.
When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” (Matthew 5:1-3)
Really, there’s blessing in being poor in spirit? Absolutely, because it’s those who realise how totally, spiritually bankrupt they are that will inherit the kingdom of heaven.
There’s blessing in mourning? Absolutely, because those who mourn will be comforted by God Himself.
Sometimes, in fact often times, the blessings that overflow from God’s heart, the blessings that roll out of God’s hands in the midst of our suffering, terrible suffering in some cases, are better, so much better, infinitely better than anything that the shallowness of success can offer.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, blessed are those who mourn, blessed are all who suffer, because God is in that place with you.
That’s His Word. Fresh … for you … today.