Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6 NASB
When I was a kid, it was often taunted during playground quarrels, “Oh yeah, well my_____ is better than your_____.” Or “my dad can beat up your dad.” And “my mom is prettier than your mom.” I’m sure those same things are being said on playgrounds everywhere today, too. It makes me smile to think of the innocence in those childish statements, yet brings me to a place of adult wonder.
I never was very confident in stating that my anything or anyone was bigger or better than anyone else’s, but I would say it just the same. It seemed the right thing to say for some reason, because everyone else said it, too. Were any of us confident that our dad could beat up your dad or my mom is prettier than your mom? Probably not, but somewhere deep inside, we hoped it to be true. For some reason, we felt the need to defend our parents or our stuff. We felt the need to feel superior to someone, anyone, just for a moment.
As Christians, we will often say with bold confidence, “God is bigger than your circumstances.” Notice I said “your circumstances” rather than “my circumstances…” It’s an interesting dichotomy. Do we believe it for others but not for ourselves? Or is this just another word phrase we say in a very different type of playground?
Someone is in distress and we come up with all sorts of Christian verbiage in an attempt to soothe a hurting heart. “The Lord is with you! He is bigger than your circumstances! He will see you through! He has a plan!” But… do we really believe it ourselves?
Do you want the answer to be YES as much as I do?
I’ll be honest. There are times when YES is a healthy reality in my life and heart, but there are also times when it’s more like an insecure maybe instead. Life circumstances become the bully on the playground, and all I want to do is take my toys and run home. Is God really bigger than my _____?
When life is on track and not much is amiss, I find myself much more relaxed and secure in the arms of my Savior. It’s easier to counsel others to have faith and wait on God’s timing and plan. Did I believe it this morning when I told my son that “God is bigger than his situation?” YES I did! And I believe it as I write this. I believe God is bigger than my anything. Bigger than my fears. Bigger than my hurts. Bigger than my own agenda. I believe He has a much better plan than I will ever conceive.
I can unwaveringly say I believe all of this because He’s proven it to be true. Even when life is a huge mess and I can’t seem to find my faith amongst the rubble, He has ALWAYS come through. He has ALWAYS either taken care of the trouble or carried me through it. He has ALWAYS been there!!
He’s seen me through divorce, single parenting, tough financial times, medical issues, depression, job stress, and countless other hurdles in life. He has seen me through each and every day of my life, even when I didn’t know it. I am so very thankful I know this to be true!
If you find yourself in a place where your YES is turning into an insecure maybe, try this. Look in the rearview mirror of your life. Do you see where God has been? Do you see where He has held you through a storm? Do you see where He has beaten up the bully in your life? Do you see how much He has always loved you? And oh yes, do you see where He’s allowed you to fall, but gently picked you up and shown you a new direction?
Yes, sometimes He lets us make a mess of things because that’s what free will is all about. Sometimes He even allows a bully in our lives in order for our character to be molded and formed into something closer to His image. I’ve heard it said that “God is more concerned about our character than He is about our comfort.” A hard pill to swallow? Maybe. But, isn’t that what any good parent does? If we truly want to see our children succeed, don’t we need to be the bad guy now and then? Don’t we need to let them fall on their face a time or two in order for the growing and real learning to happen? If I truly call God my Father, then I must accept His parenting of me, too.
Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Ephesians 3:20 NLT
Here is where our faith begins. Each and every day, we decide to trust in the One who can be trusted. It’s a new day. There will be a new bully on the playground. We will say with confidence, “My God is bigger than you! My God can and will handle whatever you decide to throw at me today because He is my Dad and He is able to kick your butt!” I don’t know about you, but that just makes me smile. ☺
Father God, thank You for protecting me through the storms and trials of this life. I am so thankful You are always there to teach, correct, and save me when I need it. You alone are worthy of my praise. In the matchless name of Jesus, amen.
In His embrace,
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