First, welcome back! If you haven’t heard the jaw-dropping story behind this painting, read about it here!
I want today’s blog to be impactful, and I feel that I can best achieve that by being brief. That way, there is no wandering off during the blog, but processing and time to consider my thoughts.
However, you know me – so, we will see how brief this truly ends up being.
Being open about my relationship with God and my love for Him has brought me many things, including questions.
Sometimes, these questions are from people who genuinely want to learn or understand. Other times, these questions are from people who want to challenge and pick apart everything Christ followers believe.
Before getting into a discussion about religion and faith, I urge you to ask yourself why you’re curious: do you want to learn, or do you want to challenge?
If you want to learn, perfect! Still, ask all the question’s and do your own research!
If you want to challenge, be honest with yourself and others about that. If everyone is cool with that type of debate, go for it.
Me, I don’t like challenge or conflict. I like accepting everyone’s opinions for what they are, silently agreeing or disagreeing, and carrying on with life.
So, like, I’ll be straightforward and tell you that I’ve never doubted God. I am not sure why I haven’t, or if I ever will. I remember hearing other believers claim that everyone will think there is no God at one point in their life, and I was so. stinkin. shocked. This doubt is never something I have personally experienced, but I have to assume it comes during very dark times – especially if the doubter was already a Christ-follower.
I believe that we all have intense struggles that not many people are aware of. Sometimes, it may feel like God isn’t there, He doesn’t care, or He’s trying to break you. That’s when I find myself needing the reminder that God never gives you more than you can handle.
For example, when I was fourteen/fifteen, I really felt like Dawson was who I was meant to be with. I bawled and felt heartbroken for months because we weren’t together. I know that God broke me then because I wouldn’t have handled Dawson’s cancer well at that age. It wasn’t something I was mature enough to go through, strong enough to support him, etc. As dramatic as me being crushed sounds, God was telling me no then to protect me and tell me yes later.
I’ve even seen it occur throughout the past year. God has told me no, my heart has shattered, and then I was given a yes later – to something better.
So much better!
It’s hard to remember, and sometimes it can be months and months of darkness, but God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.
“God will carry you through the storm.” – Isaiah 43:2
Maybe you’re not feeling like God is hurting you, but you’re hurting Him.
You’ve sinned, you’re sinning, and you’ll sin.
How could He ever love a sinner?
God is all-knowing. He knows that we sin. Also, He knows what’s in our hearts. Does sinning make you a bad person? No – learn from it. Does sinning mean you spite God? No – you messed up.
God loves you endlessly and eternally. You just have to accept His love, listen for His guidance, and grow as a person.
“But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” – Romans 5:8
Maybe you also doubt His word or The Bible. So many people, typically challengers, ask,
“Why does The Bible say this or that?”
I could tell you all-day-long that it’s just a metaphor. But, that has to be a concept you are open to accepting.
When you read The Bible, don’t take it word for word, trying to find errors. Take it word for word, trying to apply it to different situations where it fits.
“No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and His love is made complete in us.” – 1 John 4:12
I could go on and on. I barely touched the surface here.
What it comes down to is: are you truly ready and committed to establishing or rebuilding your relationship with God?
If you are, take time to learn and grow – that doesn’t just mean reading The Bible or attending church. For me, I feel the most on fire for Jesus when I blast worship music. For others, it’s watching movies or documentaries, listening to podcasts, reading books, or having conversations about it.
How do you learn best? What’s your favorite way to learn?
Growing your relationship with God shouldn’t feel like trying to learn calculus. It should be fun and exciting – those emotions are all influenced by the way we choose to learn. Maybe reading isn’t giving you the feeling or relationship you need, so venture out to other mediums and platforms.
God is here for us in every way. What way works best for you? Do you need someone to be present? Know that He is. Do you know someone to guide you? Pray to Him. Do you need someone to mentor you? Look to His Word.
Whatever works best for you, and whatever you need, start there. God is bigger than us all; God is everywhere; God is in all of us.
If you’re a fifty-seven-year-old life-long sinner and non-believer, He’s rooting for you just as much as He’s rooting for me. He loves you eternally, and He’s ready for you when you’re ready for Him.
Look within your own heart and follow that. Odds are, it’ll lead to Him. How can it not when He’s everywhere (when you want to see Him)?
Have a great week!