It’s nearly 2:00 in the morning and I wish so much I were asleep. I’m sick with a cold, have a pounding headache and that awful feeling of suffocation when I lie down and can hardly breathe. I am dreadfully tired and I know I need sleep but I just lay there awake.
I read a chapter in The Problem of Pain by C. S. Lewis a little bit ago. I started reading the book months ago but put it down because it was a difficult read and I was getting through it so slowly. For some reason I had a sudden, strong urge to pick it up again tonight and read a chapter.
Surprisingly the next part of the book touched on God’s will so was specifically interesting now since I’ve been mulling over that topic in the last several days.
One truth in reading that became clearer to me is that when I tend to ignore God’s will for my life it’s when things are ‘going well’. I naturally tend to do things that please God because that’s what I happen to want–it’s to my liking but the desire for God’s glory is not present and it’s more or less a coincidence that God and I want the same things in my life at those moments. I do not at these times choose God; rather I am ignoring my need for him which is so much clearer in the face of death. I want to like to do what God wants me to do but I want to like to do those things for the pleasure and purpose of glorifying God.
I feel blessed and am grateful for the pain I’ve gone through and that I’ve been through as much as I have at a young age. Were it not for trials and suffering I would not have seen my need for complete dependence on Jesus. Through suffering my soul has strengthened; my body may be weaker now but what is that compared to a soul?
It is so much easier for me to want God when I’m lonely and things are going rough so I thank Jesus for being perfectly humble to accept me in my weakness when I turn to him out of sheer loss of everything else. I sometimes think he’s all that’s left but so often fail to realize he’s all that’s ever there and worth having. I simply ignore him when I feel full and happy. How foolish I am! Without God as my treasure, shining in all his brilliance and glory (so bright I can’t look upon his face) I am simply sifting through gravel and mud to keep a bit of gold dust.
As a man and woman vow on their wedding day, I vow to God now: to love him and desire him for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness or in health – not his but mine because he is perfect and I am not. He vowed his faithfulness to me long ago and his loving-kindness is everlasting.
Like my parents, I do not question why God chose us to suffer but I say, ‘why not?’ I am blessed to have gone through the trials I have because my faith has been tested and in the gracious will of God, it has deepened.