“It’s not fair!”
Sometimes in life we come to a crossroad. Will I trust God or blame Him? Will I walk forward in faith or run away in rebellion? There are always curves in the road, roadblocks and even dead ends, but wisdom says, “even when I don’t understand, I will trust him.”
Proverbs 29 shows us this fork in the road; there are two diverging paths–we can choose wisdom, or righteousness; or we can follow the path of wickedness, or evil.
“Without revelation, people run wild, but one who keeps the law will be happy.” Proverbs 29:18
Part of the problem we have when life doesn’t seem fair is the short-sightedness of our circumstance. What some might call a trial or a difficulty is often a pathway to revelation. It is not uncommon for God to use those difficult circumstances in life to reveal Himself in a way that we have never experienced Him before.
Let me explain.
Several years ago, our youngest was feeling a bump with consistent pain near his temple. While at first we dismissed it as pre-teen acne, the condition worsened enough that we decided to get it checked out. His doctor was cautious and sent us for an MRI to be safe. Later that day we received a phone call that we recognized as ominous. The family practice doctor wanted to come by the house to talk to us. That doesn’t happen. A doctor making house calls? This doctor was our friend. A member of our church, he knew our family well, and wanted to tell us in person. That few minutes of waiting was torture, but our first response was to pray. We knew something was coming, and whatever it was, we needed to stand on the firm foundation of our faith.
The rest of the story won’t seem as dramatic as that first day when the doctor said, “I’ve got good news and bad news.” “There is a tumor on his skull that will have to be removed as soon as possible, but the good news is it hasn’t reached his brain yet.”
While we might never know, this side of heaven, why these kind of things happen–we can know that God will walk beside us in the journey. Being faithful in the good times can be easy; it’s when life throws you a curveball that you have to choose to trust His purposes and plan.
This chapter uses words like stubborn, foolish, arrogant, angry, and proud. If we’re honest, these sound very much like a spoiled child who likes to throw fits when they don’t get their way…
And we can very easily see ourselves reacting this way when we are faced with a trial.
Aren’t you glad that His discipline is always based in love? God relentlessly pursues us and even uses the circumstances of life to offer an intimacy that we might not have any other way. Fear often drives us away, but when we truly believe that He loves us, that love will drive our fears away.
“The fear of a man is a snare, but the one who trusts in the Lord is protected.” Proverbs 29:25
“There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. So the one who fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because He first loved us.” 1 John 4: 18-19
I see so much of Proverbs as a father speaking wisdom to his son, faithfully disciplining and training in righteousness. Our Heavenly Father wants to see us disciplined in such a way that we make good choices and avoid the kind of discipline that comes from choosing the wrong path. The world says freedom is living the way you want; Jesus said, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)
I love this song because it is my heart’s desire–for Him to be the God of All My Days–the good ones and the bad ones. Every one of us have stories of both; I want all of my stories to tell of His love, His goodness, and His faithfulness.
Our son is fine, by the way. He is healthy and serving the Lord through music. Our prayers for our children are always so much more than a healthy body–of course we pray for their health and safety, but there is nothing we desire more than to know that they are walking in the Truth. No matter what life throws at them.
I have friends who are going through some really difficult things right now–and chances are, you know someone who is facing some kind of trial. Just so you know, I am praying for you today.
“Heavenly Father, how I wish I could take their pain, but I can’t, so I am asking you to pursue them with loving-kindness and give them your peace and your presence in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
Take Him with you on your journey. Trust that He loves you more than you know. He is faithful and He will sustain you. Reach out if you need a hug or a word of encouragement. I’m here and I bet there are others who want to help but don’t know what to do, so please know you are not alone.
“Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us be concerned about one another in order to promote love and good works, not staying away from our worship meetings, as some habitually do, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” Hebrews 10: 23-25