What Do You See?


020 What do you see when you look at the picture on the left? Animal? Zombie? Evil monster? Seems a little scary, right?

 

Below is the actual picture. The bigger picture. The reality.

bunny pic copy

When we look at something so close that everything around it fades out, all we see is a distorted view of reality. The truth here is that the evil looking monster in the first picture was simply a close up view of a cute little bunny eating in a garden with red-eye from my camera.

The world view of current events is like looking at the first picture instead of the second one.

Not to say that there is no danger at all.

That bunny could have bitten me if I’d been able to get too close. It might have had rabies or fleas. I’m careful when taking pictures of wildlife. Whether rabbits or alligators, it’s wise to use common sense.

But I also don’t run from the bunny because it might pose a distant threat.

I think you get the picture. (Pun intended.)

Our perspective breeds fear if we get too tunnel-visioned. Fear breeds more fear. Like yeast making dough rise, every few hours the dough has doubled. Unless we punch it down, it will take over.

It’s amazing how uplifting it is to simply turn off the news and take a walk outside with a little fresh air and sunshine. (Even in snow for some.)

God promises good for us. He does not want to harm us, only draw us closer to him. (Jeremiah 29:11) But the world is filled with evil so we will have trouble. (John 16:33) The good news is that Jesus is our hope, gives us peace and makes a way for us to live well in turbulent times. When we understand God’s incredible love for us, fear is cast far away. (I John 4:18) We can believe that God’s got our back. He’s our refuge if we run to him and don’t choose to focus on the blow up of the small picture. (Psalm 62:8) All we have to do is acknowledge him as God and our Savior. (Philippians 2:11)

Let’s be wise. Be safe. But not let fear make us fretful or frantic.

Are You Angry at God?


pexels-photo-247314.jpegMaybe you’ve never really thought about that question. Or maybe you shake your fist at him daily. Perhaps you’ve had a loss or tragedy occur in your life, and you can’t reconcile the idea that a loving, all powerful God could allow something so horrific.

You’re not alone.

I’ve never met anyone who didn’t at one time or in a lifetime question where God was when ________ happened. I certainly have.

As a matter of fact, for six years I was angry at God and didn’t even realize it. You see, I loved Jesus and believed God was good so I never considered that I could be harboring anger towards him. I believed he was in control in a good (well, mostly good) way and had brought me into a better place than I’d previously been in.

And he had.

But when God had spoken through someone that “turn around time” was coming for my life, I believed God meant that my failing marriage and business, my soon to be foreclosed on home and my hurting children would all suddenly turn around and come out rosy – you know, butterflies and unicorns stuff.

But it didn’t.

We lost our business and home, were forced to file for bankruptcy and ended up divorced with kids that had suffered far more than I ever thought possible.

What the heck?

So, six years later, to the exact day, when that someone who had spoken those promise-filled words showed up at my now different church (in a different state) speaking promises to people, I found myself perturbed. Conflicted. Angry.

I knew our pastor to be full of integrity and completely trustworthy so I wrestled with what I felt had been lies spoken to me years earlier. Later, after a strategically orchestrated meeting (only God made that happen, but that’s a different story), I drove away, parked my car in a remote location and let God have it.

Screaming, crying and recognizing my anger at him for the first time.

Until he whispered in my heart, “Didn’t your life turn around?”

Well…uh…yes. I guess it did. Because up until that point, I had accepted behaviors in my marriage that never should have been allowed. All that tragedy caused me to decide that I wanted a different life. As a result, I made new choices, and my life completely changed.

What I believed God meant and what he said were two different things. My perspective was shallow and off. We both wanted better for me, but he saw big picture and I saw immediate. He had change in my heart while I looked for change in circumstances. He set my course on a new, amazing life that would never have come if I had gotten what I asked for.

I realized I had to forgive God.

Forgive the one who forgives? Yep. That’s right. And thankfully, his grace and love for us it so great that he doesn’t hold our anger at him against us. He took care of me and my kids and blessed us incredibly during those six years that I was angry at him and didn’t know it. He knew it and waited for exactly the right time and orchestrated my circumstances perfectly to gently speak to me.

I cried, told him I was so, so sorry and our relationship grew deeper that night. I’ll never forget that night. Sometimes I share that story and it helps other people too.

As a matter of fact, I wrote a book, Rachel’s Son, about a young woman who felt that same anger when her only son was murdered. It took her many years and a path of destruction in her life until she could face her hurt and anger and finally forgive the Forgiver.

You can get the kindle version FREE on Amazon right now through tomorrow, March 3. And, the print version is more than half off. This is what one woman said:

“…I just finished reading Rachel’s son and it has changed my life. It was a gripping book. Couldn’t put it down but the most amazing thing has happened. When u got to the end…I sobbed.” (omitted words to avoid spoiler!)

It might be something that helps you handle anger with God, even if you don’t know you have any. I pray it will bless you.