It’s up to God to make the first move


God let me down then, and so far as I’m concerned,
it’s up to Him to make the first move.  

There’s something wrong with that statement, but maybe not what you think.

It was made by someone who used to love God.
Truth is though – that doesn’t matter.

There are only so many ways to look at our relationship with God –

  1. We can say we haven’t made up our mind about God
  2. We can hate God
  3. We can say God doesn’t exist
  4. We can love God

That’s about it, really.

We can say we haven’t made up our mind about God

Let’s get rid of the first one right away.  

He says He’s God.  He says He sent His only Son to die for you, so that if you choose – you can have eternal life with Him, as opposed to eternal life in Hell.

Let’s be honest.  That a really big deal.  You really need to make up your mind!  If the Bible is right about God – you owe it to yourself to make up your mind.  By the way – if the Bible’s correct, and you don’t make up your mind, you’re automatically in category 2 – you hate God.  At least be real with yourself – make up your mind!

We can hate God

OK – if you hate God – you hate Him.  You’ve got the free will to do exactly that.

We can say God doesn’t exist

Of course – you also have the free will to say this as well.  As with the people who can’t make up their minds – if the Bible is correct, this also puts you in the category of hating God.

We can love God.

Finally, we can love God.  We’ve made up our minds, we believe what the Bible says about Him – that God does exist and that Jesus died for us.

God let me down

So, where does that leave us with the statement – “God let me down“.

You’ve probably heard the saying – We only hurt the ones we love.  And from that, it’s maybe easy enough to come to the conclusion that God loves us, so He hurts us.  However, I think that saying is backwards.  I believe, if we were honest about it, the real saying should be – we can only be hurt by the ones we love.  Seriously – it’s the people we love that can affect us in a big way – what loved ones day about us matters – so does how they act towards us – much more so than people we don’t really care about.

To prove that, let’s look at the four categories on how we relate to God.

We can say we haven’t made up our mind about God

If we haven’t made up our minds about God – and I mean really, truly haven’t made up our minds – God letting us down shouldn’t be that big of a deal to us, since we don’t even care enough about Him to decide how we feel about Him.

I submit, if we feel really let down by God – then we actually had made up our minds – and we had decided that we loved Him. we can only be hurt by the ones we love. We are hurt by what we think God did to us, exactly because we loved Him, and didn’t expect what happened.

We can hate God

If we hate God – and I mean really, truly hate – God letting us down shouldn’t matter at all.  How can we be let down by someone we hate?

I submit, if we feel really let down by God – then we didn’t actually hate Him – and we actually did love Him. we can only be hurt by the ones we love. We are hurt by what we think God did to us, exactly because we loved Him, and didn’t expect what happened.

We can say God doesn’t exist

If we say God doesn’t exist – and I mean really, truly believe He doesn’t exist, not just “hope” He doesn’t exist – God letting us down can’t happen at all.  How can we be let down by someone who doesn’t exist?

I submit, if we feel really let down by God – then we didn’t actually believe that He didn’t exist. We may have told ourselves that we hoped He didn’t exist, but the reality is that if we feel hurt by God, then we actually do believe that He exists, and further that we actually did love Him. we can only be hurt by the ones we love. We are hurt by what we think God did to us, exactly because we loved Him, and didn’t expect what happened.

We can love God

If we love God – this is the most natural position to have and claim that God let me down.  It is, as we’ve seen, the only one of the four that makes sense.  Further, we’ve seen that no matter what we tell ourselves, a feeling of being let down by God shows that we must be, in fact, in this category and that we love God enough to be let down by Him.

It’s up to Him to make the first move

Now – here’s the real problem with the statement at the top.  

No – the earlier parts about what category you claim to be in versus the category you are actually in, that’s not the big problem. 

The problem comes when you think that God let you down – and you find out that therefore, you actually do (did?) love God in order to even have been let down – and then you’ll find out that it was up to God all along to make the first move.  Yes – I really said that – it was up to God to make the first move.  That’s absolutely true for every single one of us.

But, that’s still not the problem.

The “problem” is that God has already made the first move!

1Jn 4:19 We love because he first loved us.

God loved us first – and then, because of that we are free to love Him.

Sure – that’s easy to say.  We hear it all the time in church.
But what about this –

Jn 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.”

How’s that for love?
And if you say that’s not enough – having His Son suffer like He did – and die that horrible death on the cross – what else do you want?  What else can you ask for as proof of god’s love for us?

Conclusion

Yes – all sorts of awful stuff happens in this life.  There’s a fine line between what God does and what He allows.  It’s a line I’m not going to get into here.  I’ll just say there’s so much stuff that goes on in everyone’s life – and one thing I learned, after way too long, is to stop asking “why me” / “why are you doing this to me?” – and started asking instead – “what do you want me to learn from this”?

I say that because the reality is – God does love us, and when bad stuff happens, it’s up to us to decide how to react to that stuff.  We can hate God for it – we can try to pretend God doesn’t exist – or we can try to pretend that God doesn’t matter.  I’ll tell you though – I’ve read so much stuff from atheists about God that I can’t believe they, for one instant, don’t believe that God doesn’t exist.  No one can spend that much time and energy on something they believe doesn’t exist.

The only reasonable solution then is to run to Him – to learn – to be supported by Him.

We’ve all got parents – and while I can’t relate my parents to what I’ve said – hopefully you can.
If you’ve had kids – hopefully you can relate to this from your own kids.
If you’ve got pets that mean a lot to you – ours are like our “kids” – then you can, like me, relate through them.

Realize that God loves you – 
and that while you may feel let down, time will show that you weren’t let down at all, and that you actually grew from that experience, as long as you hang on to God.

If you feel let down – tell Him.

If you’re angry with Him – tell Him.

He can take it.  He already knows, and won’t be the least bit surprised when you tell Him.

Just don’t let go of Him.  Even being angry and telling God you’re disappointed and let down, you’re also telling Him and yourself that you still believe in Him and still care about Him.
So, hang on to that – until you realize that He loved you all along – and always will.

As far as the image at the top goes then, you’ll find that God is the One who really cherishes you, who wants to hold you up when you feel down, but even more wants you to walk alongside Him, forever.


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