I’m terribly impatient. I’m especially impatient when I think something has to be done by a certain time or it’s over. But God, through all this, remains patient with me.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.'”
Patience and Prayer
I’ve found, through life experience, that sometimes God will answer prayers a long time later. For example, when I was a freshmen, I had a crush on this one boy. I asked God if we could date, and he actually answered my prayer. A year later, we were together. Sometimes, he answers prayers in a different way. I prayed my entire childhood for a horse, and got a beautiful pony. And sometimes, sadly, he doesn’t necessarily not answer prayers, but says, “No, my child. I have something different in mind.” I asked for my parents to stay married over and over again, as a child. They still divorced. But I can be confident that his ways and thoughts are higher (Isaiah 55:9), and his will is “good, pleasing, and perfect…” (Romans 12:2).
What About Healing?
I was contemplating earlier today about healing. I grew up in an abusive family. I’ve since forgiven, a bit, all who wounded me, but it’s so much harder letting go of the hurt caused me. I sure do love my family! And “love covers over a multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8). However, either I’m not made perfect in God’s love, enough to complete pardon their sins, or I haven’t sought help from the Spirit to fully forgive them because sometimes I lie awake at night, upset with those who hurt me. Which made me think… Why are people in so different stages of life?
I admit it: I was a mess growing up. I was constantly depressed. Sometimes, I wouldn’t get out of bed during the day except to eat and use the restroom. And I was too anxious to get what I needed. I often overlooked my needs because I was afraid of human judgement, and then had to deal with the anger and shame.
Yet, my sister had many friends. she laughed constantly, had several, healthy relationships, and was a very generous Christian.
My best friend was so kind, always smiling, and very studious. She was a devout Christian. It showed in her life, too.
Then there was me. I would be happy and kind one minute, and the next instantly angry, experiencing this mood swings because of, what I call, “emotional triggers.” This is when someone does something that reminds you of a painful moment in your past, triggering a negative emotion. I simply couldn’t cope. Not even spending hours in prayer or worshiping the Lord would heal me.
Was I Doing Something Wrong?
“‘If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and heal their land.'”
-2 Chronicles 7:14
This is a tough question… I don’t know. I surely struggled with pride. I had sins I wasn’t repentant of, but would that cause me to deprive me of healing? Nope! This is where good news comes in!
Healing In Christ
“But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.'”
This verse is pretty clear that healing is in Christ! We are no longer unable to avoid sins (I hope I said that right). “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13). We can escape the burdens of life. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). We have forgiveness for our sins and are no longer under condemnation. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus…” (Romans 8:1). If we go to Jesus, we can receive forgiveness, which conquers shame, strength to fight temptation, rest from the burdens of striving to fulfill the law, and freedom from the wrath of God.
We Still Struggle
I understand we still struggle and suffer… with a lot of things (see my post about why there is suffering). I don’t have all the answers, but the Bible does, and the Holy Spirit helps us receive these answers and blessings.
A Call to Prayer
“…The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”
Remember this when you’re discouraged and hurting. God hears our prayers.