Does anyone else ever feel like God is just saying no to a lot of things? I must confess that I have felt that way lately. And I’ll admit it. I’ve been disappointed. There. I said it. Disappointed. I don’t want to say I’ve been disappointed with God, but rather his responses, but what if I am? What does that say about me? That I don’t trust him, that I don’t really believe that things work out for my good, and that I’d much rather be in control than relinquish all my rights to him? Yep.
In some ways I’ve come to understand this better since becoming a parent. I know that Josey shouldn’t try to plug things in to the electrical outlet, so I do what I have to keep her from trying to shove that toy in there. I know the danger that could be, but she doesn’t. One day, she will and she won’t cry when I say, “No mam.” But for now, while she is so limited in her knowing, I must make decisions that are best for her. I can see the big picture. I know it’s the same with God. He sees me, his child, reaching to touch the hot stove, and he lovingly and graciously pulls my hand away, saying, “No, dear one.” I’m not suggesting that every desire that goes unmet is because it would dangerous to us, I’m suggesting that He just knows best. And he also longs to draw me unto himself and to make me more like him.
I have recently had to face the reality that I will likely end up having another c-section with this pregnancy. I was hoping and praying to VBAC, but Corabelle is currently breech like her big sister was. In my last sono when it was confirmed she was breech, I had to hold my tears back while the sonographer chatted with me about her name and how big she was. I got in the car to go home and all I could think was, “Come on God, couldn’t you just throw me a bone? With all the stress this pregnancy has brought, couldn’t I have at least this one little thing?” But I remember the hot stove and the hand of the Father that gently pulls it away. I’m not saying that if I had a natural delivery that something bad would happen and God is sparing me from that. I just know that he sees all the circumstances surrounding the birth of this little girl. Maybe he just wants his presence to fill the operating room that day, rather than a normal delivery room. It begs the question, “What is going to bring him the most glory?” I’m reminded that even though this is my birth and my body that at the end of the day it’s just not about me and that one day in Heaven, I probably won’t be sitting around swapping birth stories. I live to serve. And I do so willingly because I believe that Jesus is the answer. To everything.
I know these truths in my heart, but I’d be lying if I said I haven’t been angry with God. My walls can testify to the things I’ve said to him in response to my various let downs, the hot tears streaming down my face, my fists pounding into the pillow case. But I’d also be lying if I said he didn’t meet me in those moments. He never returns the anger. He never gets frustrated with me not getting it. And at the end of the day I know. I remember. He is good. He loves me. He loves me. He loves me.
I also know though that sometimes things just don’t make sense. And maybe they never will in this life. I don’t understand why babies die, why people go hungry, and so many other things. The only thing I know is that there is a plan in motion to remedy these things. There is a Savior that died, rose again, and is yet returning to finish what he started. Things will be made right.
And I realize that it’s okay to long for things to be a certain way; to long for no more pain, let downs, loss, fear, to long for eternity. I’m reminded that God has set eternity in my human heart (Ecc. 3:11). It is right for me to long for the beautiful, the perfect. I think the key though is to reconcile this idea with trusting God in those disappointing seasons.
There’s a time for everything.
A time to be born. A time for babies to lose their lives.
A time to sob uncontrollably. A time for the whole body to rejoice.
A time for the world to be in utter chaos. A time for the peace of God to reign and rule.
May I better learn to find him in disappointment, to cling to the redemption of the cross and the promise of a return.