Struggling with God
Understanding his will and his timing.
Transcript: Welcome to the Light of Christ weekly podcast. Light of Christ Anglican Church is located in Georgetown, Texas, at MLK and University Avenue. We are a modern expression of the ancient faith. You can learn more about us at lightofchristgeorgetown.org.
Our sermon soundbite today comes from Luke, Chapter 18, Verses 1 through 7. "And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, 'In a certain city, there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man.' And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, 'Give me justice against my adversary.' For a while he refused. But afterward, he said to himself, 'Though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming. And the Lord said, 'Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to His elect who cry to Him day and night? Will He delay long over them?'"
Now, I want to make a clarification here because often, this passage is preached improperly. It’s preached like we have to struggle with God, through prayer or fasting to get what we want. It's taught like that. And so, if I want healing or if I want this to happen in my life, maybe they're good things. But maybe they're not. Maybe they're a Lexus or a, well, Lexuses are good too, but you know what I'm saying? Maybe they're just a direct product and obvious product of my lust, but I can get it if I just pray hard enough and do the right spiritual things. That's not what he's talking about here.
First, it's a wrong view of God. God is love. We don't have to rip things that are good for us out of His hands. Why would we have to do that? If God is love, He would generously give us everything that we need. So yet, why do we struggle? The reason we struggle with God is not to rip something out of His hands that He won't give us. The reason we struggle with God is that we don't know what is good for us in this world, and we don't know God's timing.
We don't. We have a very small perspective. This is hard for us to wrap our heads around because we all think we're the center of the universe and that we have the best perspective on life. And the last person we question about anything is... ourselves.
But we have a very small perspective. And I don't like to use my family as an analogy here, but let's just say little boys in general, they like to run up and stick their fingers into what on the wall?
Sockets. Electrical sockets. I don't know why. They just want to stick their finger in there, or they somehow get a fork and they want to jam it in there. And you stop them. And what do they do? Do they turn around and thank you?
They scream bloody murder. "Daddy!!!!” “AHHHH!” And that's what they're saying. "I want to do this. You're infringing on my rights and what's good for me."
I'm like, "No, you have a bad sense of timing, child. When you're 17 or 18, I'll send you to vocational school where you can learn to be an electrician, and then you can work with outlets for the rest of your life, but now is not the time."
That's us though, with our Father. We know very little and He knows all. God is love, He loves you. He's not keeping anything back from you. And when it seems that He is, it's just a matter of time. Whether it's not in this life, in the next, He will make good on all of His promises to you because He is a loving God.
Thank you for listening to the Light of Christ weekly podcast. Let us end our time together with a prayer from the Book of Common Prayer. This prayer for submission to God's will can be found on page 673.
Oh, Holy Spirit, beloved of my soul. I adore you. Enlighten me, guide me, strengthen me, console me. Tell me what I should do. Give me your orders. I promise to submit myself to all that you desire of me and to accept all that you permit to happen to me. Let me only know your will. Amen.