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Christian Counselling - When God Disappoints

I do not believe there exists or has ever existed one person who has believed in the living God and not felt disappointed by Him. But how can this be if God is, and I believe He is, always right, does no wrong, is loving and just, knows all and is a good Father to us?

Of course the logical and easy answer is that the problem must be us. We create the occasion for disappointment through what we expect and hope He will do or not do. That is the definition of disappointment, along with a feeling of sadness. Yet, if people only blamed themselves in the final analysis, why would the anger, hurt, distrust, doubt and low temp relationship with God continue? Perhaps people haven't forgiven God, as if He needs to be forgiven. Forgiving Him is really about us and how difficult it is to accept who He is and to let God be God.

As people, once we have formulated a belief system and created an image of some thing or person we seriously tend to stick with it. They become a part of us. They define us. We trust them. They give us stability and security. They are life guides and we don't want them messed with. Knowing how the world and God function gives us peace of mind. We want to believe in these collected truths because we don't want to think it possible that we have been deceived, like Jeremiah thought about God (20:7).

As an example, we want to believe and keep the good image of God who would do anything to protect His beloved children, as any loving earthly parent. But, if we are honest with ourselves, disappointment comes when we hear about or personally know an innocent 6-year old child who has ovarian cancer. We desperately want to hold on to the idea that God is the greatest Father protector of all and will eagerly and always come to our rescue. But we discover He doesn't protect in the same way we do. Consequently, the image we have of Him no longer fits. We all struggle to accept the new and often less romantic and more insecure (to us) image of God. Some will find they do not like some of God's decisions and maybe not like Him as much either. But these things do not surprise, dismay or anger God. He knows they are part of any relationship.

These are common life experiences, but if they are traumatic events, as defined by the individual, they lead people into a spiritual crisis. Scary! Many wonder if they will lose their faith or meaning and purpose in life or that special connection with God that gives them peace. Out of great fear, many will seriously falter here and deny their own thoughts, questions and troubled feelings. What happens to them is not a pretty picture. Most all will eventually discover there has been a slow cooling in one's interest in and feelings for God and Christian related activities. Their love will have grown cold. The road back, if it happens, is long, long, long and torturous.

Self-honesty is harder to come by during these times of disturbing revelation, but that is what is required, if one has hope of a healthy resolve. In that place of brutal honesty of one's doubt, hurt and anger I rarely find people lose their faith, but instead grow their faith, though it is done in pain and slow motion. Yet faith, strong and sure faith, gives us hope, confidence and security and is what God desires to find in us. Be honest with God and journey with Him, not alone. Today, in this moment, His tender heart grieves for and His arms are around the broken-hearted.

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