What is God to us? Doctrinally, we can blurt out a laundry list of answers ranging from creator-God to provider, but in our day to day lives, what is God to us? For most of the time, it seems that God is not much more to us than a cash cow, lucky rabbit’s foot, ace-in-the-hole or trump card for life’s circumstances. When things appear to be going wrong and then work out, we praise God. When things don’t turn out so well, we are silent towards God and wonder or even question why God did not interact or provide deliverance.
How much of your prayers are focused on trying to get God to adjust life’s circumstances to meet your desire? When he does not answer, how do you react or feel? Do you think that he does not care? Do you feel abandoned or rejected? Many people do and it becomes the beginning of the erosion to their faith. What about Moses on the back side of the desert for 40 years? Was he abandoned, rejected or forgotten? Remember Joseph in prison. Was he turned away or forsaken by God? Abraham, who waited for so many years after the promise of a son was given, was not forsaken by God. Their lives were a demonstration to us that God has a plan greater than our understanding and even though discouraging times may come, he is in control to work all things for good.
Our response to negative life circumstances is different than theirs. We praise God for the actions that he does as long as they align with what we want. God performs those actions because he wants them. However, we do not praise God when he does or allows things in our lives that he wants, but are contrary to our desires. We complain and even at times rebel against him. What we should do is praise God in the midst of all circumstances of life because he commanded us to (1 Thessalonians 5:18) and because he promised to work all things for good to those who love him (Romans 8:28).
We do not because we fail to remember our deep plight of misery when we were enslaved to sin. All attempts to rescue ourselves from its grip of bondage were futile… and then Jesus came. He saved us from the penalty of sin and gave us a new life in him. With that work alone, we should for the remainder of our lives be thankful and not expect anything further from The Lord. We need to remind ourselves daily that we belong to God and are his servants. He does not serve us: we serve him.