Stuck

I had good intentions not to get stuck this time. Then it happened again, right there between the pages of the Old Testament. I was finding myself unable to move forward. I prayed “God, I don’t understand You.” It was difficult to read every morning, and I was getting farther and farther from the goal of reading through the Bible in a year. Why was I not able to make sense of God and what He was communicating here, in the middle of wars, murder, strife, and unimaginable evil?

I love reading stories about Jesus healing the down and out. I feel His compassion when He bends low to reach out His hand to a woman caught in adultery. My heart jumps when I see Him healing sick children and asks little ones to join Him on His lap. I want to dance along with Him at parties where He turns water into wine and wish I could have been the one walking on water next to Him. I want to keep on reading.

However, when I see Jesus judging the nations or find God destroying those whose evil has reached its limit, I get uncomfortable. When I see people who are being swallowed alive by the earth and a husband an wife struck dead on the spot for lying to the Holy Spirit, I question. I rather not read about the rich man who went to Hades and had no hope of ever making it out. I get stuck.

I have to continually remind myself of God’s amazing grace. His grace is most vividly displayed in the cross. Here God makes His love for us visible in an act of unimaginable wrath and judgment. He pours the wrath we deserve upon the One He loves, His only Son. Jesus gives up what He is most entitled to, a rightful place on the throne of heaven, and trades His crown for a crown made from the remnant of the curse. He wears it on His royal head. He dies for a people who are His enemies. Lovingly He draws us away from the judgment each of us deserve. By faith through grace we are saved. All who look to Him, and accept this amazing gift and let His blood bleed on their behalf  will be saved, no matter the depth of their sin, or the width of their transgressions.

Maybe I have been getting stuck on the wrong things. Maybe it’s more reasonable to say “God, I don’t understand You” while looking at the cross and the wrath that was poured out on Jesus instead of me.

~

“Father, thank You for Your love and heart toward me.
You draw me with an everlasting love,
away from the wrath I deserve.
You lead me to Jesus and help me see
that it has all been paid.
All my sins have been ransomed.
I am free.
You call me Your child and entitle me to an inheritance,
eternity with You.
THANK YOU FOR JESUS.”

~

For God has not destined us for wrath,
but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ

1 Thessalonians 5:9

 

About Heidi Viars

“If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth ...” ― C.S. Lewis ..... In my pursuit of self, I found utter darkness. In my pursuit of truth, I found Jesus, who dispelled the darkness by His forgiveness. Now I follow Him and try to understand Him better. I am a wife, mother of 6, blogger and love taking photographs of sunrises.
This entry was posted in Christian Poetry, Devotional, Ponderings, Prayer, Revival, Sunrises - Pictures and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to Stuck

  1. melodylowes says:

    I find myself with a new understanding of God’s judgement when I see the devastation wrought by sin and it’s presence in the world God created to be good. It brings me great comfort to know that the atrocities and evil done to me as a child will be weighed in that great big balance and judged, fairly and rightly, when in my lifetime, it will never see justice. BUT – I also wrestle with the fact that grace has been shown me – and I leave all of that judgement to Him, knowing that I stand as a sinner before Him, too – and that I get the chance to see redemption being worked out piece by piece in my own heart! Deep thoughts today…

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Dear Melody, thank you for your tender comment … indeed one day all will be set right … and the earth which has been groaning since the fall will be made new. … blessing to you, as you surrender all into His capable hands … nothing is wasted there, dear friend, nothing!

      • melodylowes says:

        I am finding that to be very true, Heidi. NOTHING is wasted – and all can be redeemed!! I’ve had any chances to rejoice in the fact that God’s judgement is perfect and final – and that I am blesses enough to be called His!

  2. Caddo-Jael says:

    WOWZA, this is powerful!

  3. Heidi, I appreciate your transparency regarding your thoughts and feelings about reading parts of the Bible. I, too, find some sections harder to read than others. The difficult chapters provide a backdrop for the amazing grace of our God and motivation for me to continue my prayers for those who have not accepted it yet.

    Blessings ~ Wendy

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Thanks so much this encouragement, dear friend! Maybe there are things about God we won’t be able to understand while we are here. I am grateful He is patient with me and helps my seeking heart to find Him … even through wonderful bloggers like you 🙂 Blessings to you today!

  4. theywhoseek says:

    Heidi, I do fear the wrath of God . . . and as I ready and study the Book of Revelation . . . it give me every reason too. Horrible things will be unleashed on the unsaved and those who are lost . . . we must know all aspects of God and why He must punish those who have rejected Him. This nation, this world needs to come to the cross and beg for their sins to be forgiven then only then will they not have to experience what is forth coming. I am so happy you have the life saving blood of Jesus running through your veins and I pray His peace that passes anything we can imagine will work it’s way into the marrow of your bones. ~ Blessings of peace to you ~

    • Heidi Viars says:

      We studied Revelation just recently in our women’s Bible Study. It truly will be horrible. It made me weep for those who reject God. Christ is our only hope. YES, I want that peace in the marrow of my bones… never to be shaken! Blessings to you!

  5. I feel so privileged to be saved and to constantly experience God’s grace. When I see those in the world who don’t have it because they have continually rejected Him, it makes me sad. I too have been reading in the Old Test. and to read about how people were so evil and how they blindly followed those who went before them, it’s hard to understand sometimes. But God is always just to inflict wrath on sin because He is just. And he offers His grace and love to all who will receive it—we have access by faith into His grace in which we stand, Romans 5:2.

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Thanks so much Stephen, for taking time to read and comment. What a peace we can experience when we are covered by Christ’s sacrifice. We are forgiven … and indeed have access to His marvelous grace through faith in Christ 🙂

  6. ddclaywriter says:

    Thanks Heidi,
    I appreciate your honest struggle with knowing the God who is beyond our understanding. He describes himself in human terms often so we can understand him better, but really he is so far beyond us that we will be learning and exploring and trying to better understand him even into the ages to come as we read in Ephesians.
    I love the Old Testament but I know what you mean about some very difficult passages.

    Blessings to you.
    I pray you will be able to fight through the tough spots and make it all the way through.

    Doug

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Thank you so much, Doug, for taking time to read and comment. Your prayers are so very much appreciated. Yes, making it all the way through is the goal! I am amazed what He reveals to our hearts when we take the time to seek Him in His Word.
      Blessings to you on your journey with Him

      • ddclaywriter says:

        Thanks Heidi, blessings to you too.
        Sometimes the journey feels like a walk in the park and other times it’s like a trip across a raging ocean in a small boat.
        But the Lord can still walk on water and come out to meet us when we get a bit scared of the waves.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Couple of things. We’re so focused on the love of God that, as you write, we get uncomfortable with the thought of His wrath. Yet consider that His hatred of sin is so great that even His own beloved Son must feel the weight of that wrath in order to atone for our sins. Second, I’d never really thought of the crown of thorns in connection with the curse. Thanks for making the connection.

    And thank you for the post.

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Thanks so much for your comment and words of wisdom. They are much appreciated.Blessings to you today as you bask in the reality of His forgiveness and the hope of eternity with Him whose love for us is beyond our wildest imagination.

  8. scriptordeus says:

    Thank you for this devotional today, Heidi. I will never comprehend the mercy of God towards us, when His justice is what we deserve. Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift!

    “Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.” – Eph. 2:3b-5
    (your photos are beautiful too!)

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Thank you for the Scriptures and encouraging words. You are right, He is incomprehensible, unimaginable, and unfathomable … and yet He invites us to come and get to know Him more 🙂 “But …. God ….” two marvelous words! Blessings to you today

  9. cshowers says:

    Heidi – this was a wise word. “Maybe it’s more reasonable to say “God, I don’t understand You” while looking at the cross and the wrath that was poured out on Jesus instead of me.” This just pierced my heart. Powerful.

    Lord, I’m so thankful that Your ways are not my ways, and your thoughts are not mine – otherwise, where would everyone be? You are merciful when I am unmerciful. You are loving, when I might hate. Apart from You, I am full of bitterness and bile. But in You, I have become a new creation.

    Now, I am no longer the same. My hardened heart has become a heart of flesh. The unforgiveness I once harbored has been replaced by mercy. Help me to always keep my eyes fixed Your cross, Lord Jesus… amen.

    Thanks again Heidi for blessing us with this word.

    Love,
    Cheryl

    • Heidi Viars says:

      I have prayed your prayer, right along! Amen, dearest Cheryl … Blessings to you as you share with others His amazing grace and love! Thanks for taking time to encourage me today 🙂

  10. I think sometimes we become stuck when reading about evil and its consequence in His word is because it touches such a raw nerve in acknowledging how we would stand before God if we weren’t in Jesus. The enormity of His mercy and grace has us trembling.

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