When God Fails.
These all died in faith, not having received the things promised…having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth…But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Hebrews 11:13,16
Have you ever been disappointed with God? Has God ever failed to keep up his end of the deal? In my addiction, I prayed and prayed again for God to change me. He did not. God failed me.
Philippians 4:19 says that God will supply every need of yours but I know this not to be consistent with reality as I see it. God does not always provide in the sense that I understand provision. Eleven of the twelve disciples met violent ends. Christians across the globe and through time have been brutally executed for their faith. Did God’s promise of provision not apply to them for some reason?
In the verses above, the writer of Hebrews lists the heroes of the faith and the promises that God made with them. Those promises, unmet in this life, were received only after this temporary existence. This may seem to be a cosmic rip-off from our perspective but that view exposes the defect in our shortsighted understanding. The writer of Hebrews, reveals the ultimate reality that what we need most in life is eternal, spiritual and thus beyond this world of flesh and blood.
God always provides what we need. We just may not see it yet. We see this tangible, temporary reality in our flesh as our definitive reality. It in fact is not. In 100 years, you and I will be dead and this fleshly existence will be a remote memory. In 1,000 years, you and I will realize that our spiritual life has always been the greater reality. This perspective of course, turns our understanding of need on its head.
We may think that our greatest need is a certain job, car or house. God sees that our greatest need is far beyond the desires of this flesh. We may see that God has failed us but that, in reality, is just a defect of perspective. When confronted with the possibilities that God is defective or Scott is defective, it’s of course always me. If it seems God has failed me, I have to go back and analyze my perspective to see where I am wrong. God is never wrong and God of course, never fails.
This is faith, to keep our eyes on God and make our feet follow, even when it seems that we are not having our needs met. God, being God, sees our ultimate needs and never fails to deliver, even if we cannot see it now.
In my addiction, I needed to learn that faith meant keeping my eyes on God and following him. I wanted God to magically change me but I was willing to do nothing. I did nothing and God did nothing. Then I had the audacity to accuse him of failing me. God did not fail me. He insisted that my feet follow that which I said I believed in. He made me obey before he delivered on his promise to provide what I needed most.
If we find ourselves accusing God of failure, we would do well to step back and ask God to help us with our perspective. We need to ask for the faith to believe in that which we cannot yet see. It is in keeping our eyes on God and off of self that our defective sight is corrected.