“Let us beware of rebellion against the Lord. Circumstances are of His choosing, because He wants to bless us, to lead us (even through the wilderness) out of Egypt, that is, out of ourselves.” Elisabeth Elliott
There are times when the unfairness of life can set our hearts up to become offended by God. After their brother Lazarus had died, Mary and Martha both said to Jesus, “If you had been here, my brother would not have died’ (John 11:21b). They could have been offended with Jesus, prior to seeing how the story ended with Lazarus’ resurrection. We too can cry out to Jesus when life is hard, “Why did You let this happen? You could have prevented this loss!”
Knowing everything filters through the fingers of God can cause offense IF we have the slightest doubt that God isn’t good. Standing on God’s goodness platform keeps us anchored in His strength. Placing our faith in His goodness keeps us steady and upright during the storms of life.
Our trust must be firmly planted in God’s character, not in circumstances. We find nourishment when we let our roots go down deep in who God is. Realizing God is good and all-knowing and that He alone sees the whole picture, the end from the beginning, and believing He’s a faithful Father who knows what’s best for us, gives us peace during adversity and the grace to give Him thanks.
Recently our cart was upset and turned over and our plans were derailed. Through it all, God’s reminded us that He’s got this, that He’s in control, and that what the enemy meant for evil, He will use it for our good (Genesis 50:20). Not once has the Father lost His grip on His sovereignty, even when His Son Jesus was being crucified.
Submitting to God’s perspective, humbling ourselves and giving God thanks, and having our faith established in God’s goodness, will keep us secure when life takes us by surprise. Jesus told John the Baptist’s disciples while John was imprisoned: “And blessed is the one who is not offended by me” (Matthew 11:6). We too will be happy when we’re not offended by God.
“God has a purpose behind every problem. He uses circumstances to develop our character.” Rick Warren
Describe a time when you were offended by God.
What steps can you take to prevent yourself from becoming offended by God during a trial?