Sucker Punch!

bush_yale_righthook suckerpunch

I have heard second-hand that my style of writing can be likened to a “sucker punch”. LOL, I guess that may be the case. I tend to start off with pleasantries and trivialities, and then dive into whatever deeper thoughts come to me without warning. I’m not sure if this is because I need to warm up to whatever my topic is going to be, or if on a subconscious level I like catching people off guard. I apologize if I have shocked anyone into a sudden coronary or stroke by the unexpectedness of my literary departures. (I love you, Annette!)

Shocking as it may be, God is always there. Was He there when I was struggling with an addiction to porn? Of course He was. He was there every time I was abused as a child, or picked on and bullied. He didn’t turn away when I refused to believe in Him. He was right beside me when I cursed at people who tried to reach out to me and point me in His direction. When I lashed out at others in my own pain, He was there. Not once has He left me alone, no matter how much I resented Him or was angry with Him or even cursed Him. I hate to break it to you, but no matter what you have done, are doing, or are going to do, He is there right beside you, and even inside of you.

And pay attention to this now; He is not simply standing by watching whatever situation you may be in as it proceeds. He isn’t taking some passive stance of mourning the event. He is there getting you through your struggles, lifting you up to where you need to be to get through them. Notice I did not say He is taking away your pain, or granting you super-strength to throw a bully down the hall, or launching lightning bolts from your fingers to defeat some super-villain. He’s there in granting you just enough strength to hold out when you are trapped beneath the rubble of a building for two days after a tornado has destroyed the town you were visiting. He was there in the timing of a phone call that took the pressure off of the trigger long enough to see that the one you hurt the most was calling to tell you she still loved you. He was there when you read scripture over your dying father, easing his spirit as he passed from this world.

While I will not deny that He can do anything, I find the subtle touches of His miracles the most heartening. He says to this world, “I will give you what you need, so that you can look back and see Me.”

 Jeremiah 29:11

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

You could take this verse completely out of context, and read it to say that the Lord our God will never allow you to come to harm, that everyone will live happily ever after. Hogwash. If that were the case, then what about the book of James, chapter 1, where he talks about the struggles that life will have and how perseverance will cause us to mature? Jeremiah 29:11 isn’t a mistake, it speaks of how our merciful and loving Abba God is always with us, and that while we will face many trial and tests, He will never abandon us no matter what we do. Flowers grow best with some fertilizer.

Do not lose focus, super-Christian. Is the goal of our walk along the narrow path to be skipping through sunlit fields of daisies to a corner office and a 3 bed, 2.5 bath split level in the ‘burbs with our wife and 2.5 kids? Of course not! Our goal is ETERNITY in Heaven WITH GOD. This world is our path to get there. Please do not confuse the journey with the destination. And He has not once, not one single time, no matter how many times I search the Bible or the internet, equated being a Christian with being perfect or above anyone else or *gasp* with an easy road. Rejoice when you are tested, when trials and tribulations haunt your every step, for it will be then that your true character in Christ will be revealed.

There will be times that you will meet those tests and you will fail. You will miss the mark. Some people call that sin, but that is not my definition, nor is it my church’s definition of sin. Sin is willful disobedience to the Lord. It is choosing to go the wrong way. If you have a different meaning for the word that is fine, I am not casting stones, but in this blog, that is the definition we are going to go by. Don’t like it? Write your own blog.

When you fail (not if), He will be there to pick you up, dust you off and get you moving again. Trust in His purpose for you, that He will guide you and sustain you.

God’s Blessings be upon you. G’night.

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