Have you ever prayed and pleaded with God over a personal matter and still had the answer be no? Have you ever laid your heart bare and thought surely God will have mercy on me? Yet, what if God’s mercy didn’t look exactly like the manuscript you sent up to Him? What if God’s mercy came through hardship, as your tears fall to the ground? Our faithful and just Creator looking beyond our desires and reaching our needs.
I know the feeling. Daily I pleaded with God, asking Him to grant me what my heart longed for. I was like Jacob wrestling with God, hoping, if I held out long enough, I too would hear God’s approving words.
So I kept on knocking, kept on praying, because I knew God was the only one who could answer my request.
What seemed like silence, what seemed like a closed door, was really acknowledgement of a God who sees the overarching picture. He heard my prayers, he heard my petition, and yet…
Yet His answer didn’t come how I wanted it. God saw my broken heart, and knew I needed more than this prayer request to mend my heart of glass. He saw the big picture. Not only hearing this prayer, but the dozens of other prayer requests that reached the heart of God.
Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
So like a child waiting for her gift to arrive. I prepared for God’s grace and sovereignty. Awaiting for His answered prayers with open arms, but instead of everything falling into place automatically, I didn’t realize I would have to suffer. I would have to feel pain before I felt joy. I would have to struggle up a mountain before I saw the view.
God’s ability to use even our hardship should not come as a surprise. God is a just and loving God, compassionate and merciful. Our pain, our lowest points of vulnerability is an open door to see God’s glory.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
So as I cried and got angry over what felt like lost dreams. Hearts were being shaped around me. Prayers I had prayed for years were being answered. God was delivering me from years of pain I didn’t even know I carried. As I walked through my trial, reminders that God is in control resounded around me. Giving me more reminders that I can trust God, because He loves me, and no matter what happens in life God is in ultimate control, and has no trouble doing the miraculous.
In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.