Wrong Question, Right Attitude
Is this from God or a tool of Satan? In religious circles, we wonder if a difficulty has been allowed by God to strengthen our faith or if it comes as an obstacle from the evil one.
If we decide it’s from God, we may relax a bit, for we assume it was sent to strengthen our faith. If it comes from the hand of our Creator, it won’t permanently harm us. He loves us.
But if it’s from the Devil, we may throw back our shoulders and ready ourselves for a fight. We resist the difficulty with all our might. We put on our soldier outfits and fight heroically.
Problem is, we often cannot be certain whether a problem is from God or of the Devil. And if we focus on God’s all-powerful nature, we may blame God, believing he caused the pain, or that he is cruel for allowing it. Or maybe he was unhappy with us. Punishing us. But for what?
I believed God was loving when things were going my way, but when they weren’t, the questions nipped at me like a feisty Chihuahua I could not escape. It put a wedge between me and God. I couldn’t really trust the one being who could comfort me in my deepest difficulties. I was alone.
And then the moment of revelation came. I’d been trying to decide – is this from God? Is this from the Devil? I realized I was asking the wrong question. I realized that actually I didn’t need to ask the question at all. I didn’t need to know if my illness, my failed relationship, my difficult day or my difficult life was from God or brought by the Devil to bring me down.
Today I know that whatever grief comes into my life, Satan wants to use it against me, but God wants to use it for my good. My attitude shifted. I don’t need to debate the source of the difficulty anymore. Instead, I’m focused on the bedrock truth that God loves me. I know he’s working so that “all things work together for good” in the lives of his children.
How do we get to this point? We don’t give up. We don’t stop speaking to God, even if it’s a scream. We trust as much as we can and admit to God and to ourselves that we lack faith. And then we take his outstretched hand and listen for his voice as we walk together into the storm.
Are you asking if the difficulty you’re going through today is from God? Will you take that question to God now and allow him to walk – or even carry – you to the other side of this?
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