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“…I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you. But anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise that person at the last day.” (John 6:53-54, NLT)
I don’t understand God sometimes! To be honest, it’s really most of the time. Why doesn’t He clearly reveal Himself to me? Why does He often leave me guessing at who He is and what He is doing? I have these great expectations about God and what He could and should do and I get frustrated and disillusioned when I don’t see Him behaving the way I think my God should.
My husband had a cousin who found love at the age of 40 and married a man who had lost his wife to cancer. He had three children, who longed to have a mother again. They had prayed for three long years and she was their answer!
Her wedding was such an amazing celebration – so full of life and joy. But only 3 months later we were in that very same church holding her funeral. Her husband and her children were devastated! I found myself questioning God. It seemed so senseless and even cruel! How could there be any good in this?
When my son was in high school he experienced an incredible amount of loss and disappointment in a six-month period. As a result, he became disillusioned with God. I begged God to show Himself to my son, “He needs to see You and know that You love him. Will You just prove to him that you are God?” But it didn’t happen that way and my son struggled in his faith.
Why does God do that? Why doesn’t He feel compelled to meet our expectations?
After all He is God! You would think that because He wants everyone to come to Him, He would be out and about proving who He was and what He could do. So why doesn’t he do that?
As I was reading my Bible one day, I came upon a passage that echoed this struggle I was having with God. Jesus was speaking to His followers and He was explaining to them that He was the Bread of Life. Look at his controversial words, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you. But anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise that person at the last day.” (John 6:53-54, NLT)
Really?! Who wouldn’t be confused by those words? It goes on to say that many of his disciples said, “This is hard to understand, how could anyone accept it?” (No kidding!)
Many of his followers turned their backs on Jesus that day and so He turned to his twelve disciples and asked them if they were going to leave Him too? Look at Peter’s reply, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life. We believe, and we know you are the Holy One of God.” (John 6:68-69, NLT)
Do you see it?
Peter says, “WE BELIEVE and we KNOW you are the Holy One of God.”
I believe what Peter is saying here is that even though we don’t understand You . . . even though You aren’t meeting our expectations of what we think a Messiah should be . . . even though we can’t see the Way we will TRUST you. And I love what he says right before that statement. “Lord, to whom would we go?”
Times without number I have heard Peter’s words echoed by other followers of Jesus in times of disillusionment, “Where would we go? How could we ever walk this road without Him?” I’ve come to the conclusion that we cannot compel God to prove who He is. He will do it in His time and in His way.
His WAY is the way of faith.
So when I am disillusioned because my God is not meeting my expectations, I CHOOSE to believe, to trust that His way is good. I turn my eyes back to the cross. For how can I question His goodness, when He willing laid down His life for me?
Question: Can you choose to believe and trust God, despite your circumstances?