Sometimes people say God causes or He allows something negative in their lives to teach them a lesson. I don’t personally agree with that theology, but if you do I still like you. I don’t need people to agree with me to like them. I prefer to give people the freedom to think for themselves! I think that’s respectful!
With that said, I want to share an example. Tomorrow morning I go to the dentist to get 3 cavities filled. 😳 That’s 3 shots in my mouth. 🤦♀️
Do you know why I got 3 cavities? Not because God caused me to get those cavities or allowed satan to put those cavities in my mouth.
God was actually trying to spare me by having my dentist encourage me time and time again to brush with an electric toothbrush and floss, but I didn’t listen. I said to myself, “I don’t have time.”
Getting those cavities was simply a natural consequence of my choice.
Now, does that mean I’ve just given up on believing in God’s goodness in this circumstance, even though I got myself into this mess? No way. I’m believing those three shots aren’t going to hurt a bit tomorrow – haha! Help me, Jesus!
Believe me, I’m not saying I understand or have an explanation for everything that happens in people’s lives so I’m not throwing everything into one box here, but all I know is, in my own personal life, if I am experiencing something negative I always seek God’s wisdom in the matter instead of just believing it is His will for me to have that negative situation in my life.
In other words, I’m willing to look at myself truthfully and hear from the Holy Spirit on if there is something I need to do differently. I think everyone should be open to doing this but, sadly, some people are not willing.
Here’s another example:
If there’s a relational issue with a friend or an issue in my marriage or with my kids, I don’t just assume the problem lies with them. I talk to the Father and I ask if there is anything I am not seeing. I ask Him, “Am I deceived about any part of this?”
Deception is a tricky thing because many times the person who is deceived does not know they are deceived. And then there are other times when a person simply does not want to face truth.
Several years ago I was having problems with inflammation in my right ureter/kidney area. Over a decade ago I went through something I call My Two Year Health Nightmare. You can read about it by clicking on the link I just shared. Because of that happening and because sugar causes inflammation (at least it does in my body), when I would eat lots of desserts I would have pain in that area of my body.
The Holy Spirit, who was given to me to be my Helper, would lovingly try to warn me by encouraging me to eat less sugar, but I didn’t listen; therefore, I ended up in the hospital with pyelonephritis (a kidney infection).
Did God cause me to get that infection? Did God allow that infection to come into my life? I don’t believe He did. I don’t personally believe He, who is love, is capable of such a thing.
Again, He was trying to spare me, but I loved that sugar so much that I didn’t listen.
I did end up going off sugar after that for about a year and it’s not that I didn’t eat anything but I didn’t eat many desserts over the span of that year and I felt SO AMAZING!! Then this past Thanksgiving and Christmas I got on a sugar binge like you wouldn’t believe and guess what happened? That pain returned in my right ureter area as well as other aches and pains I experienced in my body. Again, not God’s doing. I know it was inflammation from the sugar.
Thankfully, I did not let that go on long enough to get another kidney infection. By the grace of God I received help from my Helper – the Holy Spirit- and stopped binge eating dessert.
Another thing I’ve noticed that eating sugar does to me is it makes me crabby. Almost every time (and I kid you not when I say almost every time) I have a dessert, the next day I have some kind of emotional breakdown. Whether it’s yelling at myself or having a crying spell or something else.
I have a choice. I can blame it on everyone else or I can face truth and receive the help that God is just waiting to give me!!
Friends, He wants you to have healthy relationships. He wants you to walk in health and wholeness emotionally, mentally and physically and He will lead and guide you if you are willing to listen!
Let me clarify something. When I encourage you to be willing to face truth I understand that, as a Believer in Jesus, the person you truly are is who you are in Christ. Me too! That’s why, even when I did get on that sugar eating binge I did not receive guilt and condemnation over my bad choices nor did I begin to believe the lie, “Well, I guess I’m just a sugar addict.” Then, at some point I guess I got tired of trying to muster up enough discipline to stop the binge eating sugar pattern and I began to receive God’s grace, remembering who I was – righteous, loved and forgiven – and His grace is what gave me the power to walk out of that season of binging sugar.
So in no way am I saying you can pull yourself up by the bootstraps and willpower yourself into freedom. Freedom only comes by knowing who you are in Christ. As Joseph Prince says, “Right believing leads to right living.”
But I am encouraging you to listen for the still small voice of the Holy Spirit anytime you have anything negative going on in your life because He just may have something specific to speak to you that will turn the whole situation around.
I do think there are times when a person doesn’t want to face truth about an area they may need to make an adjustment in so instead they blame everyone else around them and even sometimes blame God. And they stay in bondage. It’s sad but it happens.
Don’t be that person, friend. God has an absolutely wonderful life for you to live and when you are truly living in His perfect love for you, you don’t have to be defensive and try to appear perfect in front of others. You can be real. You can be yourself. I call it mask-free living and coming from a girl who was a former perfectionist who had such a difficult time admitting when she was wrong, mask-free living feels like I’m swimming in the ocean of God’s great grace. Because I am!!
Last example. I was out on my front porch the other day watering my flowers when I began thinking about a specific situation and I noticed that bitterness was rising up in my heart. Well, I’ve already made a lifetime decision that I am not messing with bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness. They are poisonous and I will not allow those negative emotions to run my life, but that doesn’t mean they don’t try to sneak in sometimes. When they do, I have to remember, that’s not who I am!!
I believe bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness can even make us sick and I’m not willing to let the devil steal this abundant life from me that Jesus died to give me only to spend my life filled with poison. Nope. Not happening! Therefore, I stopped what I was doing, I sat down and I talked to the Father about it. I received His love and He spoke something to me very specific about the situation that made all the difference!
Why would we want to live in a small place with walls of self-protection surrounding us that we think are saving us (when in fact, they are actually stealing life from us) when we could live in the wide open spaces of God’s great grace!
“By entering through faith into what God has always wanted to do for us—set us right with Him, make us fit for Him—we have it all together with God because of our Master Jesus. And that’s not all: We throw open our doors to God and discover at the same moment that He has already thrown open His door to us. We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand—out in the wide open spaces of God’s grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise.”
Romans 5:1-2 (The Message)
If you have some questions because of things you’ve personally gone through or seen someone else go through that has caused confusion in your heart, that’s completely understandable. God is not offended by your questions. I’ll link to a good message by Jeremiah Johnson on this subject titled “Why Do Bad Things Happen To Good People?” He presents this, often touchy subject, in a very loving and respectful way!
Living The Great Adventure,