Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "All Through The Night"1 (Lyrics)
Proverbs 3:5-8 – Trust the Lord completely, and don't depend on your own knowledge. With every step you take, think about what he wants, and he will help you go the right way. Don't trust in your own wisdom, but fear and respect the Lord and stay away from evil. If you do this, it will be like a refreshing drink and medicine for your body. (ERV Easy-to-Read Version)
Perhaps you have heard the story of the person hanging from a cliff waiting to be rescued. He has a vision of God's hand reaching down from heaven and lifting him to safety. So, when a helicopter appears, he sends it away. After he falls to his death, God asks him, "What else could I have done?" A helicopter was not quite what he had envisioned.
I think that may be true for us all. When we get into difficulties, we want to believe that God will help us. We ask, we even beg, trusting that God will come through and rescue us, while at the same time having preconceived ideas about how we want God to do that. Wouldn't we prefer Him to solve all our problems the easiest and most spectacular way? Wouldn't life be much easier if God did all the work, so that we just have to sit back and let Him? It goes without saying that we would like God to do so immediately!
However, God has a plan for us, and God's plans will not be thwarted! That plan frequently includes having us do our part — we have to accept that God-sent helicopter, even though we would much rather that God physically grabbed hold of us and lifted us off that cliff Himself.
If we ask for healing, a miracle would be ideal, but it usually means going to doctors (the helicopter), and doing what they recommend. Even then, we may need to be patient (no pun intended). If we get into debt, God definitely wants us to do our part in getting out of debt. That generally means changing our ways. We cannot really expect to keep doing the same thing while expecting different results.
Often when we face difficulties, whether of our own making or not, there are lessons to be learned, but would we actually learn those lessons if God miraculously bailed us out every time?
Mark 14:36 – "Abba, Father," he said, "everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will." (NIV)
For me, God allowed insecurity, loneliness, and isolation; He allowed mental health issues and addictions; and He allows chronic pain. But I would not have known what they were like, nor would I ever have been able to identify with or reach out to those who are going through similar things themselves, had I not experienced them myself. Back then, I would have preferred that God had spared me these challenges, but while they may have seemed nightmarish at the time, God allowed them, and good came from them. I honestly would not be able to appreciate what I now have, had I not gone through those (and other) life experiences! But most importantly, I learned that I needed God and that He loves me! God did not, does not, and never will abandon me, and for that I will be forever grateful!
Like me, you may struggle with insecurity, loneliness, isolation, or chronic pain, but if God sends a helicopter by way of friends or other means, know that God loves you and understands you. Be willing to obey and to gratefully accept God's helicopters, as He provides all that we need when we need it.
Prayer: O Lord, our Creator, Protector, Provider, and Saviour, thank You for having our best interests at heart. Help us to do our part willingly while You provide Your helicopters to rescue us from our cliff-hangers. Thank You for understanding us so well, while continuing to love us for who we are, no matter how difficult we make it for ourselves. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.