When God is Confusing

“My thoughts are not your thoughts; neither are your ways My ways.” – Isaiah 55:8

No kidding.

Mandy’s thought:That beautiful yellow house that we put on the market in February will sell in March. For full listing price.

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(Anybody want a beautiful yellow house?)

God’s thought:

Um. Nope. Wait awhile longer. Seven months or so. At least.

Mandy’s way:

All right then. If it won’t sell, we’ll rent it out until the market turns. Piece of cake.

God’s way:

That could work. Only not with this first renter. Their credit’s bad. And not with this second couple, even though they’re looking for a rent-to-own deal which would be absolutely perfect. They’re going to decide to stay where they are for now. And not with this third couple either, even though they were already asking how soon they could move in. They’re going to get a sweet deal from their re-lo company to stay in their current house rent-free.

And, by the way, in the midst of all of this waiting, that beautiful yellow house is going to develop routine settling cracks that will send panic into everyone that looks at the house–everyone, that is, except for the builder’s rep, who will drag his feet on returning phone calls and setting up appointments.

I have lots of other seemingly wonderful thoughts and ways, too. Thoughts about how quickly an agent will snap up my novel. Thoughts about how much time I’ll have each day to work on my next one. Thoughts about the girls not fighting. My students not whining. My waistline not growing with every passing day.

So I stomp my impotent little foot and raise my puny fist in the air and then I have to laugh at the spectacle I’ve become.

Because we aren’t starving, in spite of the house silliness. And my novel isn’t rotting (though it sure feels that way), and only five agents have rejected it so far (The Scarlet Pimpernel was rejected fifteen times). And the girls do fight, but they also adore each other most of the time. And students whine, especially when they’re fifteen years old. And my waistline? Well, eating pizza and cake does that to a person, so I don’t know why I’m all that surprised. It’s not like my body’s going to slack off on its job and forget to absorb what I put into it.

Even if things are falling down all around me, they’re actually not. Because it’s all temporal. If I allow my attitude to be rocked in a perpetual, lasting way over transient annoyances and earthly disappointments (even large ones), I’m making a huge mistake. I’m missing God’s higher ways (the girls learn, through fighting, how to make peace; I learn, through rejection, how to persevere).

Easy to say. Let’s see if I can do it.

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3 thoughts on “When God is Confusing

  1. Hi Mandy, I’ve just learned the same lesson (again!) but this time from Jesus’ words which I have not noticed in the many times I have read this story before. It’s the story of Peter trying to deter Jesus from fulfilling God’s will for Him.

    Matthew 16:21-23 From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life. Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!” Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; …. here’s the good part …. you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”

    So Jesus agrees with you!

  2. Pingback: The Danger of Safety « for better, for worse, for life

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