One of the challenge points on the Better World Books 2017 Reading […]
Rachel M. Tamilio
Good News Publishers
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I've seen the looks in some of your eyes. You have been wounded, hurt, and, worst of all, disappointed. Perhaps someone betrayed your trust, mismanaged your belongings, or said things that stabbed like daggers in your already fragile heart. It wasn't fair. It was not right. It wasn't called for.
Some of you have held the hands of loved ones as they passed from this world of time and space into eternity. You were with them as they suffered, you heard them gasp for their final breath. Perhaps someone's carelessness on the road put them there. It wasn't fair. It's not right. It was too early, you say as you shake your fists toward the sky wondering why.
Why would a loving God do this? If He's really there, couldn't He stop the madness we experience in the course of this life?
Perhaps your last visit to the doctor brought devastating news. "Procedures and options" were laid out before you like a menu as you tried to cope with all that was said moments ago about your condition. Unwelcome statistics and visions of treatment and suffering dance across your mind like flames in a fire. Questions pile up in innumerable amounts, and again you wonder . . .
Have you had these questions burning in your heart? You are not alone, and God does not condemn questions. God has long been accused of "not doing enough." Even when He was here in the flesh, the people of the day expected Jesus to overthrow the Roman government and do away with the horrible oppression and suffering of the Jewish nation. He didn't, so many did not believe and were voting with the same crowd that crucified Him in the end. They could not understand that His mission was to invite them into the Kingdom of God, which is not of this world.
To those of you who have been wounded and hurt, disappointed by someone's unfaithfulness or dishonesty, please know that the Lord is not like that. God is who He says He is( Hebrews 13:8). He doesn't change with the wind or have mood swings. He loves you. He desires your fellowship even more than you long to be truly loved (Revelation 3:20, 2 Corinthians 6:16, Galatians 4:6).
To others of you who are facing death or illness of any kind, God cares. He looks at you with compassion. He wants to comfort your spirit and soothe your aching heart. He really does. Our time on earth is very limited, but His heart yearns for you to know Him in it. Do you?
To yet others of you who perhaps have been in churches where you were condemned for your weakness, shunned for making poor choices--God has a place in His heart for you. "For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly" (Romans 5:6). The greatest act of love the world has ever known was accomplished with you in mind.
The pain and weakness we experience in this life reveal to us our need for grace. In that realization, we only need to turn to Him, confess our sin before Him, and ask Him to come into our lives (1 John 1:9, Ephesians 2:8-9). As a child of God, you will never be turned away (John 10:28). You will never be excommunicated, never left alone (Hebrews 13:5). And when this life is over, you will be welcomed into Heaven, a place without tears, death, or pain (Revelation 21:4).
God aches for you, and He longs to be your Comforter. Please don't give up on Him. After all, He'll never give up on you
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