I’m a writer and the way I work through things it to, well, write. So lucky ducks that you are, you get to hear my thoughts today.
Today, I got some news that proved pretty devastating. It’s not just bad news. It holds the potential to be career altering. Life changing. After the boom got lowered, I went through the stages of grief: denial, anger…but I never made it past bargaining.
Because who am I supposed to bargain with?
See, here’s my “problem,” (which really isn’t a problem): I committed to the Lord that I would be surrendered to His will. I said, “Whatever you want Lord, that’s what I want too.” I’ve been around the block enough to know the “danger” of those words. I’ve seen and lived beneath God’s sovereignty. I’ve been abused. I lost both of my parents by the age of 29. My husband and I lost the first home we ever owned to foreclosure when the technology bubble burst in 2001. All those things happened, despite me begging God to change/prevent them.
So, when today’s news came, when the waves of this hurricane-strength storm crashed over me (how’s that for drama), I cried. I ranted at God. And I told my husband I was having a hard time not being angry at God. He said–it’s okay, he can handle it.
Very true. But my good buddy Jim Rubart called me. Talked to me. Encouraged me (check out his post on NovelRocket from yesterday–intriguing, isn’t it?). And over the course of our conversations, the anger bottomed out.
I told him–ya know, either I’m surrendered to God’s will or I’m not.
And if I *am* surrendered, how can I be angry? Because this is God’s will. As Jim said, “God’s in this somewhere.”
Think of an attic. Unfamiliar objects blocking your path. You stumble. You trip. You cut your hand on a loose nail. But just because you can’t see where you are, or where you’re going, doesn’t mean it’s worthless. You just have to find the treasure.
Did this news today go the way I wanted? Nope. It sure didn’t.
Yeah, I’m hurt. Yeah, I’m disappointed. Absolutely I want to stamp my foot and tell God it’s not fair. But this is what I asked for–a shut door, if it wasn’t right. For God to lead me, for HIS WILL to rule in my life.
So, how can I persist in anger? How can I be angry if I am surrendered?
The truth is, I can’t. If I am angry still, if I rail at Him, then I am not surrendered. I’m fighting. Check out Romans 8:7-8 “For this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law; indeed it cannot, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be *hostile* to God. Therefore, I surrender that anger borne out of heartache. Pick up the dregs of my courage and keep going.
Love your authenticity and your willing to give God the pieces. I’m sorry you had such a hard day. Hugs.
Thanks for your transparency and sharing with us. Also, thanks for the encouragement that God is still “in there somewhere”. He really is!
I admire your transparency. It would have been easier to just smile and say, Hey I’m good. But you honor God by showing and sharing your walk with Him, with us. You are an encouragement, my friend!
Sweet friend. I’m so right there with you. Although my temptation is not to anger but to stop believing that God is for me (and my joy). In the past few years, we have been handed hard thing after hard thing–hubs’ chronic illness, losing babies, financial difficulties, job loss–but God has shown Himself so faithful and GOOD and down in the dirt with us when we need Him (which is always). And I’ve viewed this all as sanctification. He’s making us holy. He’s teaching us. But somewhere along the way, I’ve stopped believing that He might also want to give us things WE would call good–like a baby of our own, or enough money to qualify to adopt one, or a publishing contract, or healing for Leo. And even being able to put words to all of this hasn’t made it any easier to change my heart. It is a daily battle to surrender the unbelief (the flawed way I view His character), just like you have to surrender the anger, to let go of wanting it our way and trust that His is TRULY better. I want to believe. Help my unbelief.
Faith is so easy in theory and often so difficult when we have to apply it.
I’m sorry you’re having to face such a trying disappointment, but you are so right. God holds us, even when we can’t feel it.
Oh boy! You used that word that sends chills down my spine. Chills of fear and peace all at the same time–surrender. Being something of a recovering control freak, I know it’s a hard one to master. That’s why it’s good to read it again and again by those who struggle with it too. Thanks for this! I’ll be praying God shows you His mighty wisdom today.
One of the most difficult, yet crucial, characteristics of relationships is transparency. If we cover up, pretend all is well, that we are always strong and never get angry, especially with God, then who will open up to us and share their own heartaches. So . . . thank you for being transparent.
I don’t know what devastating thing has happened, but I do know God knows and he has a hold of your hand and of your life. I’m sure he has a perfect plan.
Keep hanging on to him and trusting. All is well.
Grace and peace to you.
Trust is hard. I hear ya, Ronie. There’s a reason.. hang in there.
Those of us with an over-developed sense of fairness often find God’s ways difficult to accept. But some of my most profound disappointments have led to my greatest joys. Not easily. But eventually. Thanks for sharing with us.