Nothing can separate us…

Playing hide and seek can be fun, especially if you’re hiding from the kids who stand out like a sore thumb, or you’re hiding the evidence of the cupcakes and Easter candy you ate – “What empty candy wrapper in the trash can?” It’s not fun though when you’re going through what feels like the biggest trial of your life and God’s not there. Just ask Jesus when He was on the cross…

Why have you forsaken me?

Ever thought this? Probably in the middle of a storm. Not the El Nino types, but the storms that hit in life where you call on God and get nothing… Then you practice your patience, love, forgiveness, and selfless acts and still nothing. Feeling like God has abandoned you can be alarming, but maybe you’re not seeing it from the right perspective.

God’s perspective…

He wants you to go grow and not go through separation anxiety, which tends to happen with kids, right? So he sets up these tests and trials and walks away – not far, but far enough that it will look like He’s out of reach. Was this what happened with Jesus on the cross? Remember early in Luke when God showed up and said with His booming voice and the Bose speakers blaring in the background, “Behold, my Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased!” It was likely a set-up, just like in Job when God said, “Have you considered my servant Job.”

The set up…

See, God does these things where He boasts about His kids, then He tests them. Kind of like when you get a Word from God, like David. “You will become king…but not just yet. Get back to tending the sheep.” So, God sends a Word and encouragement, then walks away, but again, not too far, because we know “Nothing shall separate us from God.” So you wait…no problem.

Wait on the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Wait on the Lord.

Then things start to happen like that fiery trial or that test that they say will eventually lead to a testimony. Easier said than done, right? For now though, there’s a test and you feel alone and the test is not something easy like quadratic equations, but it’s a doctor telling you that you have a major illness, or you find out you’re going into foreclosure, and you were laid off, and you have a major illness, and your supportive spouse just can’t handle it and says it’s not you, it’s them. So in that brief second of shock you think – Okay, where’s God? No, more importantly, where was God and why didn’t He stop this! He could have prevented this. He’s God and we pay our tithes – sometimes!

Elvis has left the building…

You then realize that the God who felt so close a second ago when He said, “I will never leave you,” has apparently left the room, or so you think. Remember, we’re still in God’s perspective. Turn the Bose speakers back on for emphasis. “Behold my Beloved Child who will pass this test.” He walks away and He wants you to grow and trust Him. Remember, He’s also seen the end from the beginning, so He’s seen you come out victorious. Ahh, there’s other stuff, too, because He’s God…like how He also sees you rant and rave about Him not being there and He’s seen you balling in your tissues about “If you were here, Lord. This would have never happened.”

Raising a Lazarus in your life…

You were probably thinking that was the same text that was used when Lazarus died and you are absolutely right. A+! Drum roll please…Because, nothing happens without God knowing or approving. And we can also add, All things work together according to His plan. Jesus let Lazarus die. Not die and He was there an hour later, but die, die, as in they buried him, so God could resurrect that dead thing you gave up hope on because you thought He wasn’t there!!! Sorry, you left the Bose speakers on…Seriously though, God never set the test up for you to fail, but for Him to show up and show you who He is, “Here I am!” Have you ever tried needing someone’s help like a spouse while you struggled with bags of groceries only to hear, “Why didn’t you call me? I would have helped.” As you can see, we’ve gotten into, you guessed it, your perspective…

Your perspective…oh my…

Like the child hiding under the table, you don’t mind having fun, but after a while, if the person who is hiding doesn’t come out soon, you start to worry, cry and then think they died. Kids do that. It’s called separation anxiety. It’s when kids can only process on a milk level because their brains are really tiny and their experiences are really small. While you might think your spiritual authority is “Prime Rib all the way, Baby”, you’re probably still suckling from a bottle like most of us, calling out to God for yet another rainbow or dove to fly through the air and confirm He’s there…”Okay, a pigeon, Lord. Send a pigeon and make it rain on Tuesday and cancel all the trains so I can stay home so I’ll really know you’re there.”

But here’s the thing. That’s really small thinking – like that kid under the table. God is big, as in enlarge your tents/widen your territory big, so that means He’s going to send big tests and step back so you can call on Him i.e., the test needs to be big so you can’t do it on your own and this is the perfect time for you to call on the scriptures and Bible study lessons you keep amen-ing about on Sundays when you’re really hoping an email is in your in-box or someone responded to your FB post.

So the whole point in all of this is to trust God, which can feel really hard when it feels like He walks away, but keep in mind, He’s trying to teach you how to walk in your own spiritual authority. He may also be preparing a table for you, i.e., it looks like the enemy is winning, like Jesus on the cross, but trust God. Baby steps first, so while that test looks impossible, at times, He’s always there, know that. Just remember, He wants you to grow. So your next question is “How, right?” It’s simple.

  1. Find the scriptures that identify with what you are going through.
  2. Speak them every day and see in your mind God delivering you.
  3. Wait for Him to deliver you.
  4. Reread the first three steps because we’ve obviously missed something here. Nope. Here’s the point…
  5. God is building your faith walk. He’s helping you to rely on Him and wait for His deliverance, not your flesh, not your neighbor or the person next to you at church who said “Amen” really loudly while they stared at their phone.

Submit to God, resist the devil and He shall flee. Oh yeah, we should have put those in 3 points, too, because they’re just as important. The point is, God is never leaving you because He said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

The same God yesterday, today and forever…

Keep in mind that in the Bible God let His own son go up on a cross, He put Noah on an ark, and put Jonah in the belly of a whale. So what are we saying? God likes global travel? No. We’re saying that no matter what the test or trial is, you will come out better, smarter, wiser, more spiritually sound, smelling like whale, (scratch that one), Prime Rib, Baby, and full of more wisdom and confidence in God! That’s ultimately what a test is for – to see God put you in any situation and know that He will deliver you from every situation. That’s the whole point…

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