For one thing, He may not have said no, He may have said wait. But let’s just suppose He, for real, said ‘no’ to something you were desperately desiring. What’s your reaction? I know what mine’s been often times. Panic! I thought that was for sure the answer. I knew that would make it better, why would God think it wouldn’t? And then there have been the rare occasions that I’ve actually gotten the spiritual tee shirt that says “I did it His way.”
So He said ‘no…” Let’s see what scripture says about it, pray, and follow God’s lead. And remember, you’re in good company.
Paul said in II Corinthians 12:8-9
For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Paul was persistent, God was providing
Three times Paul asked God to remove the thorn from his side. There have been many theories as to what exactly this thorn was—so many theories in fact, that it is impossible to diagnose Paul’s situation with complete assurance, but none the less it was troublesome enough for him that he wrote about it. I always believe that if a bible event doesn’t have a name or description it’s intended for me to be able to insert my name and circumstance there. I have my own issues that I’ve sought God for and have been told no, way more times than three. You’d think I’d get the picture, but I know regardless that His grace is sufficient.
It sounds so cliché, does it not? And so easy to roll off your tongue to a friend when they’re going through hard times; but not nearly as easy to say to yourself. God’s grace is sufficient, but it’s okay to ask God to talk you through as your waiting on provision to come. As a matter of fact, I highly recommend it. In talking to God your relationship grows closer and that problem may have been the provision of restoring a right relationship with our Heavenly Father. It was a time to re-focus.
The problem continued, the praising did too
We miss the mark, or at least I do, on praising through the bad times. What a testimony of the Lord’s provision when an unsaved soul can see you going though it with a smile on your face. Sometimes you’re the provision for someone else. If they can see you holding on to hope in the hard times, it just might be the deciding factor that keeps them from going to Hell.
Paul said he would glory in his infirmities. They were a part of the plan! Again, not what we want to hear but truth none the less. In this fallen world we’re going to have troubles and struggles; and be it health, finance or people problems they’ve all been covered by the cross if you’re a child of God. They’ve received His stamp of approval for having a purpose for your gain. It may not be clear, but keep on the path and praise Him all along your way.
Because there’s power in God’s promises
The issues with promises is we can’t see them from the other side as we’re going through. A point brought up in church this past Sunday. It’s easy to look back on a problem and see how God’s woven the provision into the circumstance, but not so clear as you’re gasping for air and feeling as if you’re going down for the third time. This is where faith, even if it’s no more than a mustard seed, has to take place. Nothing happens in life that doesn’t have purpose for God’s glory and for your good. Romans 8:28 – And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
The power doesn’t come from anything you can do. It comes from faith in what Christ has already done. He died for you that you may have hope in eternity and serve a God that will work everything out for your good, even when there seems to be no good in it.