Since I wrote that post on the alleged disappointment of God, God has been confronting me with my own disappointment. It’s inevitable. It always happens. I open my mouth and say things, and He comes to ask me if I’m willing to walk them out.
Last night, in a teaching, Noah said something that shook me to the core. “God is not surprised by anything you do. And neither are his people.”
I cried. I knew inside that it was true… but not true of me. I’m surprised and disappointed by people all the time.
We are to be about the Father’s business. Just like Christ, we’re to do what we see the Father doing. We waste so much time fighting fights and battles that are a waste of our time and God’s time as well. We think that we have to defend God, and fight for morality and stand up for what’s right… but it’s all worthless if it’s not what God is doing.
I can only begin to imagine all of the pressure that Christ must have felt from people. There were so many battles that he could have fought. Everything from religious oppression and messed up teachings, all the way to political oppression and downright thievery by the government. There was no shortage of ’causes’ or ‘ministries’ that Christ could have taken up in His day. Israel was a veritable police state.
But Christ opted to look like a fool before many, many men. He chose to give His will over. And this is where I find a lot of joy.
Christ said that He was only doing what He saw the Father doing, and He did it all so that we would be able to see and hear the Father’s heart displayed in front of us, with hands and feet. He did this so that we would know what the Father really looks like.
So thinking in those terms, I suppose that there were some times when Christ was pretty saddened by what people were doing. But was it in times when people were missing it? Was it prostitution? Was it tax collectors? No, it was the religious, preaching and teaching their own righteousness and placing heavy burdens on the weak and fragile children of the most high God.
I think any of us who claim to be part of the modern ‘church’ can, if we’re honest, admit that we’ve been these religious monsters, piling heavy burdens on people that they could never possibly live up to. No mercy. No grace… simply the fact that they’re sinners and they don’t live up to our standards.
Maybe it’s your kids who experience your disappointment day after day. Maybe they can never live up to your standards.
Heck, you may even look at your standards and not think that they’re that hard or heavy. You tell yourself, “But I’m right. People should be mature. They shouldn’t act that way.” And you know, you may be right… but…
Is it what the Father is doing?
Jesus would have been right to take on taxes and the Roman government and so many other things in His time. And He would have been right. But He didn’t. And thank God. He simply did what He saw the Father doing.
Take a look at your constant disappointment in those around you. Take a look at the way you make others feel when they miss it. People of God should not be surprised by anyone slipping up.
Because if you’re really His, you know just how much He’s forgiven you of. And it shouldn’t ever surprise you to find out that someone else is just as wicked and horrid as you are.
We love… because HE FIRST LOVED US.
You may be able to quote that, but do you really believe it.
If you find yourself constantly disappointed with others, constantly upset by their sin and seeming wickedness… maybe you just don’t know the real Christ. Go back and look at him. That’s what I’m having to do. I’m seeing my hardness and impatience at every turn.
Look at the way He treated people. Study His every move. And as you do this, rejoice in His mercy. Rejoice in the way He handles the wretched. Do a dance as He sends an adulterous woman free and clear on her way to sin no more. Shout joyfully as He calls pitiful Matthew to come and be with Him.
And then, let Him examine you.
Has He not extended every single one of the same graces to you? Maybe you didn’t know that He had. Maybe you’re reading this right now and only hearing for the first time that He’s not watching you with a shameful finger pointing at you, but instead, open arms.
Gratefully, His love is bigger than ours. His ways are beyond ours. His life is so much different than mine.
So I say all of this because it’s messing up all of my thoughts and ways. And I love it. I love that He’s not as hateful and critical as me. I love sitting and taking that in. I love letting it fill me up so that I have a bunch extra to give to everyone around me.
I want these truths, His ways to fill up every inch of my being, so that I no longer know me anymore… but that just like He did, I can show people what the Father looks like by the way that I walk and talk.
Thank you God for loving me. Thank you for grabbing me when I wasn’t even looking to be grabbed. Thank you so much for giving me a new family and friends that love You when I was an orphan. Thank you for not being disappointed in me, but for calling me your own. Thank you for rejoicing over me. You are my Lord. Please let me see what You’re really doing. Make me look like You.