For he wounds but he also bandages; he strikes, but his hands also heal. Job 5:18
Where is that next meal coming from?
I don’t ask that question. I don’t ask it for myself or for my children. Yet I find myself wrestling with what God has not provided for our family. Oh, the embarrassing amount of times I’ve asked God why He hasn’t given us something we’ve prayed for when I have given my whole life to serve Him.
The other day I told my husband, “I don’t believe in the prosperity gospel, but I do believe that God cares for those who are generous. If you’re okay with it I plan on giving these things away to someone who needs them instead of selling them.” What I was actually trying to communicate was: God will take care of us financially because instead of selling these things I am going to proudly give them away. My husband responded, “I think we should give them away because so much was given to us already not because of what reward may be waiting for us.”
Gut punch received.
But that “where is my reward” mentality woke me early this morning after a sleepless night with a seemingly never sleeping one year old. I’m pretty sure my Bible (that new fancy study Bible I just HAD to have) hasn’t been opened in three weeks. You know, #momlife #excuses. I was in such a bad mood because I went to bed wrestling with God. “Where is my reward?” I kept asking.
Knowing that I was being ridiculous to even ask that question I turned to Job. Why? I guess to remind myself that God described Job with this statement; “no one else on earth is like him, a man of perfect integrity, who fears God and turns away from evil” (Job 1:8). Yet, God told Satan to go ahead and wreck his world.
I’m pretty great, but I’m not even remotely as awesome as Job was so why do I expect God to send me amazing rewards and no challenges? Job’s wife told him to “Curse God and die!” But Job said, “Should we accept only good from God and not adversity?” (Job 2:10)
Gut punch received.
It took me less than 5 minutes to read this heavy statement, but it took me three weeks to seek these words. I was finding myself hopeless in the very adversity that God was putting me through, failing to muster up perseverance and denying the chance to build character.
Job’s friend Eliphaz said to him, “For he wounds but he also bandages; he strikes, but his hands also heal.” (Job 5:18)
We can forget that while God has a plan for our lives, life is not necessarily going to be easy. It’s especially easy to forget that while that pretty Hobby Lobby sign says, Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you, this is the Lord’s declaration, plans for your well being, not for disaster, to give you future and a hope” the verse is actually followed by “You will call to me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you search for me with all your heart. I will be found by you.”
Gut punch received.
We can wait for His promise and grow frustrated when it’s not received on our time, but it’s easy to miss that He is currently keeping us from disaster, especially when we’re too busy to open our Bibles and seek His truth.
And note to self: because of #momlife I should be seeking God more than I ever did before.
Where is my reward? It’s in His forgiveness, His grace, and His gift of adversity.
- What are you focused on: what’s not in your life or all of the good God has already provided?
- How do you see God using your circumstances for His glory?
Father, thank you for everything You have provided for myself and for my family. I give thanks to You that my family is fed, healthy, and happy. God, please, in my moments of impatience and desire for reward remind me that I have received my reward. Remind me that Your Son, who gave His life for me, was the best reward I could possibly receive. But, Lord, most importantly, pull me to You daily, yank on my heart and my mind to remind me to find time to grow in my relationship with You by spending time in prayer and in Your Word. Thank you for loving me and for caring for me even when I stomp my feet like a toddler. I love you and I praise you. Amen.
Marcy Bolick, PC3 Wilmington’s Grow Zone Director, wrote today’s devotional.