Presuming Promises

How many times do we expect God to deliver on promises that He simply hasn’t given us?  God has promised that He will provide, comfort, be faithful and good, but He doesn’t promise sucess, prosperity, or even “happiness”.  We tend to start at the result, what we think the “blessed” Christian life looks like, and work backwards.  Be it job, marriage, school, we start from our expectations of “blessing” and work back thinking our faithfull obedience will procure these “promises”.  But God isn’t interested in results like we are interested in results.  We want progress, “progressive” sanctification, we think that sucess upon sucess means God’s favor.  However God might have a totally diferent paradigm.  It’s a wholly different thing to get a person to become like another person than to get them to become a thing.  The picture we carry around in our heads of the ideal “blessed” life is just that, it’s a “thing” to be accomplished.  Becoming more like a person means experiencing what they experienced.  Did Jesus escape a world full of suffering disease and death?  No He walked among it, touched it, and felt it’s weight more than anyone.  Did Jesus experience alienation, misunderstanding and rejection?  His own family misunderstood Him.  At the height of His popularity the crowds left, and eventually even His closest friends deserted.  Sinned against?  Dissapointed?  So what would it take for us to be like Him, perhaps betrayal, rejection, dissapointment and walking through a life touched by sin?  We shouldn’t be suprised when we experience these things for in fact this is just what God has promised we will experience.  When we attempt to tie our expectations and our faithfulness to what we THINK God has promised; it is the subtlest, and most insidieous form of legalism.  We think that our faithfulness procures not only God’s favor, but favor dictated by our desires.  Insideous mainly because what we live for is not God, it’s the blessings He gives.  Satan would gladly have Christians living for their marriages, churches, and children endowing them with satisfaction and personal worth.  The Enemy would gladly have us live for lives of appearance rather than for God.  Which is why I believe that God sometimes graciously ripps the mask away to reveal even the ugly sin of His children.  Why He would rather dissapoint than allow a false god of met epectation to rule the heart.  He will not have His blessings mistaken for Him.  Nor will He allow Himself or the universe to be blackmailed into our desires however noble they may seem to us.  Perhaps the faith God desires is obedience in the moment to Him simply because it is Him who asks us to obey.  Perhaps our struggle of faih day by day is to simply be faithful to Him and trust Him with the “results”.  That either good or ill in our perspective it is good, He is good, and will continue to be so even if His “goodness” is revealed in a way we didn’t expect…

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