As an individual I have personally experienced deep confusion at times in my relationship with God. This blog post is written for anyone who might be going through what I also have been through, to encourage you to hang in there, all is not lost, God has not forgotten about you, you are not necessarily displeasing Him.
The point is this: when reading blogs such as this one, it might seem as if everything is so clear cut. If X is the case, then do Y! If Z is the case, then pray harder! On this blog I try my hardest to simplify lots of complex ideas, because there can be many elements to the Christian life. However there are times when you might just be struck with confusion pure and simple. Reading Christian material there does not often seem to be any validation of this. Before I myself encountered my times of confusion I did not even realise that it was possible to encounter this as a Christian, and this compounded the feeling of confusion.
Let me explain what I mean. So often when I move forward as a Christian, I calculate in my mind – if I do this, then that will happen. This step will lead to that result, and then I could choose this road, or possibly that path. However, what happens when you are absolutely sure that a certain result will transpire – and then it does not? How about this, when you have placed literally all your faith and trust in a certain result from God – and then God does not apparently “come through” for you – and everything, seemingly, falls apart? If this is you, please, please please do not despair. Please understand that confusion can be a legitimate place to be in your pursuit of God – even a powerful place.
When interacting with other Christians, it can be very easy to pick up the idea that “being in the right place with God” means that you will always know what is happening or the right step to take, you will always be able to move forward confidently. Conversely, many Christians often give the impression that when things are not clear, it will be because you have done something wrong, or you do not have enough faith to hear from God. When I have been thrown into confusion in my walk with God, I have had to keep asking God – “Is it something I’ve done? Have I displeased You?” And then, not knowing the answer to this means that I don’t know whether there is something in my life which needs to be corrected, so I don’t know whether to move forward, for fear of getting the same non-result. As a result, I have had to fumble around in the darkness of my confusion, feeling my way and tripping over my own feet countless times.
And then there are the times when you act based on your confidence in the Bible, when you “claim” certain Bible verses for yourself, completely throwing your entire weight on them – only for them to quite obviously “not work”. These are the times when I personally have been tempted to doubt God, and ask, “Is this Bible really true? Is this God truly real?” And yet, this same God whom I was tempted to doubt has brought me out into a place where my path feels flooded with light. Instead of confusion He has given me clarity, and utter confidence in Him and His word.
For me, my periods of confusion have turned out to be very powerful in my overall pursuit of God. These are the times when I really threw myself into knowing God, making up my mind to serve Him with my whole heart, my whole mind, all my determination, largely because I did not have any other choice! Looking back, I can see that God Himself deliberately placed these times into my life, for the very purpose of taking me deeper in Him and His truth.
The times when we don’t see where we are going are the times we need to hold onto God more tightly. So go ahead and do this – make up your mind to cling onto Him as tightly as you can. Ask Him for empowerment to do this. I believe that these difficult times are necessary for developing a deep faith.
This is not theory that I am sharing with you here. This is born out of my own personal experience, of confusion mingled with disappointment mingled with humiliation mingled with heartbreak. I made up my mind to trust in God with everything that I had. And then despite my trust in Him, expected results did not materialise, and I just did not understand how to move forward or how to deal with the confusion in my understanding. If this is where you are at, then please, please please continue to hold on to God. In the midst of your confusion, in the midst of possible disappointment, continue to praise His name, to give Him all that you are.
I can assure you with all confidence that if you continue to hold onto God He will bring you through your confusion, He will fill your mouth with laughter and He will set your feet to be dancing. Looking back, you will never regret so much as a second of your trust in God. Like me, you will realise that this is the best decision that you could have ever made.
This is not theory that I am sharing with you here. This is my own personal experience. God is so real. His power and His truth are so real! To have Him in my life is – wow! What a privilege! What a privilege to be able to call on His name, and to be called by His name! So please choose God today, and please continue to choose Him, even in those times when He Himself seems to be keeping you in the dark, even in those times when it feels as if He Himself is punishing you for your faith in Him. Choose God, choose light, choose life 😉
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