An interesting discussion about Christianity, the Bible and agnostics was had yesterday. It was sparked by a stressful day and upon seeing someone from a past family friendship. You see, this person because of some lack of good and proper communication on both our parts thinks we are dishonest people now. Honestly, my husband is the most honest person I know. It makes me sick. I wish people would just be open to honest conversation. We have tried to have this open conversation but this person is just not willing to listen. I think some people just love drama, intrigue and that oh so special feeling of a narcissism high when you can feel superior to someone and decide they are not worthy of you and just cut them out of your life completely. Great for that person, except they are dead wrong. Perception is reality but our perception of reality is not always true and accurate.
Anyhoo, we got to talking about the Bible and the promises in it and just how much the hand of God is in everything. Being a Christian does not mean just working on being on Christlike and developing great Christian character and everything in your life will be blessed and lovely, money, health, etc. We still have to make strong professional decisions, sound financial decisions, and make the choice to treat our bodies as temples so as to properly care for them. I got that. It just from an earthly standpoint is frustrating to watch smug & conceited people who live only for their own personal pleasures prosper so greatly while really great people who love the Lord passionately, work hard to succeed, serve in their churches, and give to others struggle month after month. That really chaps my tail. I always think of one of the Psalms in which the psalmist is complaining to the Lord about just such a thing. In fact, he is pretty ticked off that God allows it and gives God quite the tongue lashing. But, we are told that rewards and judgment are not always given in this life. It's a small comfort. I just try to tell myself that I will spend maybe another 40 to 45 years on this earth and then I am off for eternity to never struggle or watch my friends struggle again. Also, I won't have to be frustrated by mean smug people either. So I wait.
But then the whole topic of well what about the promises that if you are seeking with your whole heart, serving, etc. etc. that our lives will be blessed and the fact that the Bible talks about the storehouses overflowing (meaning finances, provision), cups running over, abundance and such. What about that? Do you only get that if you make sound decisions and have planned your life out perfectly? Hmmmm, I hate these scenarios, and I don't have the answers. I wonder these same things too. It is a little confusing sometimes. I watch small business owners like ourselves and several of our friends and acquaintances who are self employed as well and we all struggle. I can easily think of some families who are so passionately serving the Lord, humble, loving, generous beautiful people with wonderful kids and they struggle in these tough times. And I do mean nail biting struggling. Well, you can say this strengthens our faith and it does and that is most certainly necessary but when the struggling goes on for years that is tough. It just makes it hard I guess when you are doing all the things that promise prosperity and yet it is not there. Then you have to watch mean greedy people grow, thrive and sometimes even take advantage of you. That happens to us a lot.
The only thing I can say is that even though I may not always see the promises evident in my life (and if they aren't we need to pray for the Lord to search us and reveal anything displeasing to Him so we can get rid of it.) I know God is real. I know Jesus is real. I know this because God has revealed himself to me through answered prayers and through sending others as confirmations of things I had just prayed about. I know it because the Holy Spirit puts thoughts into my head. You know, when things just pop into your head and you weren't even thinking those thoughts, that's not you, it's the Holy Spirit. I know He is real through interaction such as that. I know that He is real. And, if I know that He is real what else is there but to just keep trusting and worshiping. Even though my life has never been ideal, I've always had to struggle for every single little thing, God always makes it okay. It's never not been okay. When I should have been dying inside, He gave me peace. He has healed my children. So I try to remind myself, He is real. He loves me. He loves us all, even the meanies. I will live with Him forever one day and every single moment of eternity will not just be all right but it will be glorious! Should I give up, should any of us give up because we do not see the promises in our lives? Well, I say no, we should just know that He is real and worship away anyway. We may not always like it but I do feel confident that God knows what He is doing with each of us. I believe He has a plan for our lives. I believe the devil messes with those who love God passionately because we are threats to his stinky earthly kingdom he fancies so much. So, yes, we Christians will face those battles and we will be messed with. That is why we must stand firm. We are soldiers in the Lord's army because we must fight. And, fight I will you stinky devil. I will be so glad when you are gone forever! And, I will be so glad to never see another smug face again. We must keep our faith, think on what is good and true and never forget to praise Him and thank Him in all circumstances. It's just what we have to do.
During a tough moment the other day I just took my 4 year old outside, set up the T ball thingy gave him a huge bucket of balls and his bat. I sat in my lawn chair and watched him hit balls for about 30 minutes and we had a blast. Suddenly my stress was gone and I was a much happier and thankful person. We enjoyed the grass, the weather, the pretty trees and I was no longer grumpy and saying "Why Lord?" but instead I was saying "Thank you Lord". Just keep on going......