Accepting the Inevitable
"But those who suffer he delivers in their suffering; he speaks to them in their affliction." (v. 15)
Oswald Chambers said: "Life is more tragic than orderly." Chambers knew that unless Christians are willing to grapple with this truth and accept it, they will be plagued by inner oughts and shoulds that lead them down the road of illusion. They will find themselves saying, "It ought not to be like this" or "Things should be different" -- and the only thing this kind of demandingness produces is frustration and anger. The Fall has turned this fair universe of God's into a shambles, and though much about the world is still beautiful, accidents, calamities, and suffering prevail. And these will continue until the time when God brings all things to a conclusion.
There is nothing wrong with wishing that things were not so, but when we demand that they be different, when we say the effects of the Fall must be reversed and reversed now, we will end up feeling terribly frustrated. Life is difficult, as Scott Peck stated, and though prayer does move God to work supernaturally in some situations, life will go on being more "tragic than orderly" until Christ returns and finalizes His plans for this fallen planet. This is reality -- and the sooner we face it the better. True faith is not built upon illusion but upon reality. We may not like things the way they are in this world, but to avoid facing them because they don't match up with what we know about God is foolish. As I have been emphasizing, it is only when we face honestly the harsh realities of life that we become ready for God to speak to us.
O God, I see that facing the hard things of life honestly drives me to a place where I become desperate for an answer. Then You step in -- and give me not an answer but Yourself. I can live without answers, but I cannot live without You. Stay close to me, my Father. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
For Further Study
1. What is faith?
2. List some of the difficult circumstances of life faced in the light of faith.