What You NEED to Know When Things Aren’t Easy
The cute brunette looked at me and sighed, “Why do I feel like this is such a battle?”
Within a week, a middle-aged woman who’d recently separated from her husband, ask me the same question. So did a successful business woman whose current client keeps her up at night, as did the gal who’s struggling with health issues. And then there was the 20-something grad student who’s trying desperately to find a job. Oh, and I can’t forget the mom of the pre-teen, and the mom of the prodigal, and the sweet gal who just wants to be a mom.
Their stories differ, but their question is the same. It’s a question all of us ask at one time or another: “Why is this such a battle?”
Each time a woman voices her question about why her life feels like a battle, I can almost see her unspoken question wafting above her head, like one of those thought bubbles in the comics: God parted the Red Sea for the Israelites, why doesn’t He do the same for me?
I understand because I’ve had the same question. I’ve wondered why God doesn’t remove an obstacle, when I know He could. Or why He doesn’t perform the miracle I’ve prayed for, especially if it’s something near to my heart. Sometimes I wonder why simple things end up being complicated things.
Like every other woman on earth, I’ve wondered: Why is this such a battle?”
Ever been there?
When we can’t see God’s action, it can feel like there’s no reaction. Nothing could be further from the truth.
This morning I read something that shed light on why God doesn’t always clear our path all at once…even though He absolutely can. Here’s what I read:
“These are the nations that the Lord left in the land to test those Israelites who had not experienced the wars of Canaan. 2 He did this to teach warfare to generations of Israelites who had no experience in battle….4 These people were left to test the Israelites—to see whether they would obey the commands the Lord had given to their ancestors through Moses.” (Judges 3:1-4)
The Israelites were on the cusp of taking full possession of the Promised Land. You’d think God would make it easy; it was God’s will for them, after all. But he didn’t.
Why not? Why did God leave the obstacles and make them fight their battles?
To teach them, and to test them.
Why doesn’t God remove all my obstacles, and yours, too? To teach us and to test us.
The children of Israel had no experience in battle. Sure, God could have made things simple, like he did when he parted the Red Sea. But God knew if they were ever going to take full possession of their Promised Land, they would need to learn to fight to do so.
So fight, they did. And by battling the enemy, they gained experience in battle. They became mighty warriors, one small victory (and a few small defeats) at a time.
This is a critical lesson for all of us—our children, included. We can never gain victory over our big battles if we never gain experience fighting our little battles. And I don’t have to convince you that every ounce of ground we take for good, involves some sort of battle. Life is full of battles.
Maybe that’s not such a bad thing.
[bctt tweet=”Some battles make experience; some battles take experience.” username=”donnajonesspeak”]
Every time I chose to fight for God’s purposes, in God’s power, I expand my experience. And honestly, there’s only one way to have experience: to have experiences.
So what kind of battle are you experiencing right now?
I know it may be hard (battles always are). I know it’s tempting to lose heart. I know you wish God would make things right, right now. But your experience—the one you’re in right now— is teaching you something you can’t learn any other way.
But there’s more. God had a second intention in mind: to test whether or not they would continue to obey.
It’s easy to obey when God parts the Red Sea; it’s not so easy when He doesn’t. But that’s when faith kicks in. That’s part of the test. When we remain true to God, despite having to co-exist with the very issue we’d rather God zap away, our faith is proved genuine and true.
Do these truths help when you’d really rather God make life easy, and part your personal Red Sea? It does for me.
If God is teaching you, learn what he wants to teach you.
If God is testing you, pass your test.
You never know when your Promised Land is just around the corner.
PS. Last year I gave a message on “Why God Doesn’t Always Answer Our Prayers”, if you would like to know more about this topic, click on the link to watch.