Thursday, May 8, 2014

Can God Handle the Questions?

The message didn't specifically say the findings but I could read between the lines.  It didn't take a rocket scientist to realize the results weren't good. 

See, a childhood friend has been battling cancer for eight years.  Eight.  For eight solid years she has been on some type of chemo trying to destroy what is trying to kill her. 

Then the headaches started.  In March she learned that even though the doctors said it wouldn't happen, the cancer spread to her brain. 

And I will admit that this has kind of rocked my world.  Again.  The slew of emotions as I hurt for my friend, her husband, and the family that I have known since birth.  And it has brought up a mountain of grief that would prefer stay at bay.

As I battle the situation in my mind, I can't help but ask God why. 
Why has my friend had to fight cancer every day for eight years?  And of course the grief becomes personal when I ask why my 18-year-old sister was killed. 

A few years ago I did a study of the Beatitudes using Kay Arthur's study Lord, Only You Can Change Me: A Devotional Study on Growing in Character from the Beatitudes.  I found out that I was pretty clueless when it came to this topic.  I uncovered that meekness is understanding that God is sovereign (supreme ruler or ruler over all) and it is His will not my own.  In the study, Ms. Arthur brings up the age-old question about God being sovereign but yet bad things happening in the world.  Here are a few points that she makes:

We are so focused on the future that we can't understand the things happening to us now.  Our circumstances seem confusing and don't appear to be taking us in the direction we want to go. ...We struggle and strain to see more clearly. 
This is why some people have problems with the sovereignty of God.  They look at the future, imagining they see it clearly.  Because of their cherished goals and high expectations, they have difficulty accepting and handling hurts, setbacks, and adversities in daily life.  Life seems out of control.  How could these bumps and bruises possibly be coming from God?
...What they need is a proper perspective on the present in light of the eternal.  ...He views our whole earthly pilgrimage through the eyes of eternity.  He knows where we are going.  He knows how it all fits together.  He knows how to extract maximum good and maximum glory out of every situation, no matter what!
Life is hard.  Grief is excruciating.  Questions go unanswered.  Tears don't get wiped away.  But praise God that He is big enough to handle our hurt, anger, questions, and that we serve a God who collects every tears that runs down our cheeks (Ps. 56:8). 

I am so thankful that we can cry tears of hope knowing that this world is not our home.  Then, we can ask God to use every ounce of pain and grief for His maximum glory.  Because for me, it is only in this knowledge that I can have true peace about it all.

Read more about my story:  Confessions of a Grieving Girl and it's sequel God Uses Pain for His Glory

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The Our Out-of-Sync Life blog focuses on encouraging women to deepen their spiritual life, simplify daily tasks, and impress Jesus on the children around them.