I was stunned. I didn’t know what to say and quickly asked the Lord for wisdom. Kneeling down and looking right into my neighbor’s eyes, I said, “Wow! You sure are mad at Him. What did he do?”
“He took my grandma.”
Sometimes on our journey of faith, we have a head-on collision when our circumstances do not fit our understanding of the goodness of God and we find ourselves living in the midst of disappointment, unanswered questions, and unmet desires.
We may not declare our hurt as my neighbor did. But we may ask:
- God, can I trust you?
- God, do You love me?
- God, are You good?
- God, are You just?
- God, why did you allow this to happen?
- God why won’t you bless me, like you’ve blessed them?
Why do we tend to question God’s goodness or doubt that He loves us when bad things happen? I think it stems from a misunderstanding of what it means to be blessed by God.
I had a paradigm shift when my young neighbor told me Jesus took his grandma. I understood his anger and confusion. Today, I want us to have a paradigm shift (a fundamental change in our underlying assumptions) about what it means to be blessed.
The apostle Paul, in his letter to the Romans instructs, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind….” (Romans 12:2a) We need our underlying assumptions to be based on God’s Word, not on our culture and not on our feelings. So rather than defining God’s blessing as the fulfillment of our dreams, we must look to Scripture to see how God defines His blessing.
“Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the LORD counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.” (Psalm 32:1-2)
“Blessed is the man whom you discipline (yacar: to correct by words), O LORD, and whom you teach out of your law.” (Psalm 94:12)
“Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!” (Psalm 34:8)
Through the Word of God, we come to see what the blessed life really looks like. It has very little to do with our expectations and aspirations, and everything to do with God’s loving-kindness to:
- Forgive our sins
- Correct us by His Word.
- Allow us to take refuge in Him
May we have eyes to see how blessed we truly are.