If only academic problems were the only problems plaguing me. If that were the case, life in medical school would be so much easier. It’s true, and I always knew it was, that following God’s calling for my life would be no walk in the park. But I never expected it to be this bad.
It is as they say, that the race would be riddled with entanglements. Distractions. Things that trip you and make it so difficult to get back up again. When you finally do, what is left of your energy and motivation is but just a few drops of oil dribbling down to the bottom of a steaming gas tank. And instead of running the race, you end up shuffling. Crawling even. Desperately wondering how you’re going to reach the end with your heart shattered into a thousand pieces.
Sometimes the things that trip you aren’t necessarily evil. It’s not always sin. A lot of times, it’s a gift that God himself gives you. Something good, like an opportunity, favor in the eyes of men, a dear friend, or even a childhood dream. Something that draws you to thank him for each and every day.
And when all is perfect, and you feel that nothing can go wrong, there’s a plot twist, and God takes it away from you. And in an instant, your whole world shatters, and walking the road to the kingdom becomes just a little bit harder. A little bit lonelier.
I am currently reading the book of I Samuel, I saw the faith of David when he went up to King Saul and said that he would challenge Goliath, saying that because God helped him kill the wild animals who threatened his sheep, he would be able to slay the giant who threatened God’s people.
And I’m torn inside. On one hand, I’m thinking, “Wow, what amazing faith, this David has.” I knew how he would swear by the name of God to defeat the Philistine who threatened Israel and become a powerful and mighty king.
On the other hand, I’m thinking, “He has something terrible coming up.” I’m thinking of his entire affair with Bathsheba, his inborn child, the rebellion of his son, and the rape of his daughter. I’m thinking of how even a righteous man, in an instant, can have his entire horizon to warp into obscurity.
But then I stop and think. Could there ever be anyone righteous enough to deserve God’s blessings? Is there any one man who can dare go up to God and make a demand by his own merit? There is truly none. I am a child of God and a follower of Christ, but even then, I can never demand that from him. Even if I have plans and dreams, it is God who ultimately determines what happens in my life.
Even Jesus Christ himself, a man wholly righteous and One with God the Father, did not get what he wanted. He could have been a great earthly king, ruler of many kingdoms, and respected and honored by all men. But in obedience and humility, he conceded to His Father’s will, giving himself up to death on a wooden cross. Because of His obedience, He was glorified. And because of His sacrifice, I am set free from death’s power. I am destined for an eternity in the Father’s embrace. An embrace undeserved.
By this truth alone, I am thankful. By that, I am humbled. I realize now that even my wildest dreams, I do not deserve. Fame, acceptance, glory, I deserve none of that. All the blessings I have in my life are undeserved. Yet, in God’s love for me through Jesus Christ, I am accepted as His son and destined for a wonderful life lived serving Him. A life filled with blessing, promise, and wonders I could never dream of. A life undeserved.
God does everything for a reason. And when my life is shaken up, I can see now that it’s only so He can bless me more. When I remember again that He died and rose from the dead to bless me with freedom and eternity, I am reminded that I have been blessed with something that can never be taken away from me: a part in God’s loving plan. And with this renewed sense of identity, I get back twofold whatever was lost: more opportunities to serve Him, favor in the eyes of God, more chances to love, and more creative ways to dream.
It is through my identity in Christ, that I am being continually transformed into a new creation. And with this transformation is the hope that I may become more like him.
Seeing my problems now from His eyes, it’s almost like they were never there at all. He has given me a renewed sense of purpose, and a renewed perspective on my life.