‘Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.’ – James 1:17
Though I have spent most of my life spewing out the negative stuff (i.e., sin, which can be defined as “missing the mark or falling short of perfection”) and plowing through life at ludicrous speed, God has surprised me with emergency brakes that have brought me low. With the first of those major miracles and trials, He showed me He exists and loves me. So, I thought I’d give Him a chance. We started talking and I started reading so I could learn more about Him. Only the Bible spoke to my soul and every fibre of my being like no other book I had read before. Its work in my life is how I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that it is God’s Word and not just some stories and writings pieced together arbitrarily. I learned not only about Him, but about me, about the world, about the past, about the future, and about the purpose of life. I have found God working in the grandest design and in the tiniest of details, weaving each of our stories into His incredible tapestry.
It’s easy to be joyful when things are going well and He pours down the light, blessings, and beauty. Still, I have also found joy and comfort in the darkest of circumstances, pain, and suffering just by feeling His presence, which radiates peace, goodness, and love, with me. In my limited, self-centered views, I’ve been pretty angry at Him at times for “allowing” certain things to happen, but those are the same things that forced me to spend more time with Him…which is really what my soul thirsts for, and what my flesh rebels against. Each time I finally realized how and why I was wrong, that the short-term pain was more than worth the long-term blessing, and let God use my pain to change me, God surprised me with blessings more amazing than I could ever imagine and He shined more light on my path. And since I knew He is good and faithful from experience, it made it that much easier to have faith and trust Him with life’s ongoing or new challenges.
No matter what you do or don’t do…no matter what has happened or will happen…God loves you, always and forever. Where your sin abounds, God’s grace abounds all the more.