When a major crisis comes, I count my survival by the minute. My simple efforts to function beneath a dark falling sky are like pieces of a puzzle that fit together in ways only God knows.
One characteristic of a “super crisis” is that it is unsolvable. A child dying, a business going bankrupt, a marriage failing—all of these are “big deals” that beg for intervention by a “big God.”
When I am having one of these types of crises, my “God puzzle” has pieces with questions on them.
Why did God allow this to happen?
Is He trying to give me a message about something?
What is He trying to say?
What am I supposed to do about this disaster?
If God loves me, and He is the Almighty and creative, couldn’t He have come up with a better plan for me than this experience?
What is wrong with God?
Why is He so mean?
He’s not making any sense to me.
Can I still trust Him?
Can I still love Him?
Does He really love me?
Contrary to what some people think, I think these questions are good. They direct my focus intensely on God.
But there is a caution in questioning and it involves “free will.” I can look to God to help me move on, or I can choose to wallow in my questions. I can allow my initial crisis response to evolve into a perpetually bad reaction, like throwing an unrelenting “hissy fit,” mounting bitterness, constant anxiety, escapism or controlling behavior, or all prevailing despondency, or any combination of all of the above!
I don’t think God condemns us for puzzling over His ways. God makes a big point in the scripture to tell us how humankind doesn’t have a clue about His ways and methods, so it seems logical to me that He would expect me to be puzzling over what He allows to happen in my life.
I DO think God expects me to grab His hand and move forward.
I must work to take my “puzzling” over God’s allowance of “disaster” in my life and begin to move through my crisis and into trusting Him wholeheartedly.
Here’s what I know to do so far.
I’ve learned to talk back to myself.
I counter my questions with what I know.
I give myself examples of the “complete and whole” parts of my life puzzle.
I DO have evidence of His faithfulness—places of completion (that used to be in pieces) that He knit together to make me better.
I DO have my foundation in Bible study that He and I built together.
These areas are my evidence that I can still trust God…even in my newest “baddest” crisis.
Because of these things, I CAN KNOW God is still working for my good and the good of my family despite my present crisis.
Let’s review. (For my sake, I need to do this.)
I CAN handle the new “super crisis” I am encountering, if I take it in small steps.
Minute by minute, bit by bit, like a puzzle, I turn it over to Him.
I renew my spiritual strength by studying Bible characters and their relationship to God. I see afresh the way they dealt successfully or unsuccessfully with crisis and survived.
I remind myself of God’s past work in my life. He knew all along that my true hunger for Him would bring me to Him seeking for answers. (IF I remain honest about my hunger and diligent to seek the truth)
I wait for His specific guidance. He already provided a great amount of guidance for living by directing the arrival of the Bible—His words accomplished and assembled into testaments. This act happened long before I was born!
Will I find that God remains trustworthy in my current “super crisis”?
I will find God remains trustworthy!
He IS trustworthy!
My “super crisis” IS GOOD because it pushes me into a need to dig deep into His word to see His magnificent trustworthiness.
Without communication with God, my sense of life direction becomes vague and temperamental. I make irrational conclusions. MY CRISIS overwhelms me.
However, when I open the Bible, pray, and expectantly wait, I soon find I am no longer subject to the roller coaster of my emotions but ordered and controlled by His grace and presence.
God is able.
“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.’ Ephesians 3:20
“Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.” 1 Cor.13:12
“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” 1Peter 5:7
“But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.” 1 John 4:4