Tag Archives: holy

what do i do when i don’t get the blessing?

blessing blog

I’ve been writing this one in my head for a few weeks, so it’s probably time to put it on internet paper.

With graduations and engagements and weddings and new seasons in general, I’ve seen a lot on social media about God being so good because people are so blessed.

I get really excited when people acknowledge that we serve and are known by a good, loving, gracious, merciful God who gives His children good things.
But I get pretty bummed out when we only acknowledge Him along with completing a degree, getting engaged, receiving a promotion, getting pregnant, starting a new relationship, get a new car…insert “good thing” here.

I believe those things are all good things, and again, it is of utmost importance to recognize that good gifts come from our good God. That, ultimately, we don’t earn or deserve what we have – it has all been given for us to steward and use for God’s glory.

But what happens when I don’t get the blessing?
Is God still good?

What happens when:
I fail a class and have to retake it, putting graduation off for another year…
My boyfriend breaks up with me because he’s just not feeling it anymore…
I receive a formal reprimand because of relational friction in the workplace…
I have miscarriage after miscarriage and just don’t understand why my body isn’t cooperating…
Both of my grandmas get cancer at the same time…
Friends that I thought would be by my side forever have now rejected me and I have no idea why…
My car gets totaled in a hail storm…

Is God still good?

Or have we become a people who condition His love for us, and dare I say, our love for Him, along with what He gives us?

Tonight I’m going to the church I grew up in to open up a youth rally with some worship time. I’m going to play a song that has these lyrics:

Though You slay me, yet I will praise You
Though You take from me, I will bless Your name
Though You ruin me, still I will worship
Sing a song to the One who’s all I need

I’m straight up nervous about this one because I know it will rock some worlds.

“Umm…nah…I’m not interested in that God.”
“If God is good, He wouldn’t take from me.”
“But doesn’t God just want us all to be happy and feel good all of the time?”

James 1:17 says, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.”

Do you know what God’s Word says is perfect? God’s love & Jesus’ life.

Jesus is the perfect gift.
Jesus is the good gift.
Jesus is the blessing that none of us deserve but all of us can freely receive.

My blessing isn’t that I receive every material gift I’ve ever wanted and have no hardship in life.

My blessing is that the God of all creation sent His one and only Son to live a life that I cannot live – a life free from sin – die a death that I deserve to die because of my sin and rebellion against His perfection, and raise again on the third day so that I am now made spotless, whole, complete in Him.

I’d rather have that blessing than anything this world has to offer.

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psalm 22 (pt.2)

psalm-22-pt2

But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by mankind and despised by the people.
All who see me mock me; they make mouths at me; they wag their heads; “He trusts in the Lord; let Him deliver him; let Him rescue him, for he delights in Him!”
Yet you are He who took me from the womb; You made me trust You at my mother’s breasts.
On You was I cast from my birth, and from my mother’s womb You have been my God.
Be not far from me, for trouble is near, and there is none to help.

v. 6-11

[SO MANY PRONOUNS!]

For Christmas I received Tim Keller’s The Songs of Jesus. I highly recommend it. I mean, highly.

It just so happened that the last few days of the readings are lining up with psalm 22.

In my first pass at this psalm, last week, as I read the entire thing I couldn’t help but think of Jesus. I couldn’t help but see David’s words being reflective of what Jesus went through, even though David was writing them many a years prior to Christ’s sufferings.

This morning, as I caught up on the past couple days with Keller, he noted that this psalm in particular is a look inside what Jesus may have been feeling emotionally. That we may see a glimpse of his heart in suffering on our behalf as David writes out his words in the 31 verses of this psalm.

Now, before you scream, “Heretic!” at me, please know that I am fully aware that David was a man and Jesus is, well, Jesus. Fully God and fully human. One, a man full of sin and rebellion toward a holy, loving, righteous God. The other, Savior of mankind. Righteousness Himself.
I understand that Jesus is unable to sin.

But I also understand that Jesus was able to feel – because, well, he was fully human.

And us humans are good at the feelings.

As I read the 6 verses highlighted above, I can’t help but feel alongside David this tension of, “What the heck is happening to me? Aren’t You supposed to rescue me?” vs. “You are holy. You have not changed. You have brought me into Yourself and You will be near. You are my helper.”

Man. What a place to be.
What a God to allow us to wag our finger in doubt and questioning.
What a God to draw us in, to make us trust in Him.

When there is none to help, He is there.
When those around me mock me, He lifts my head.
When I am despised by people, I am called His beloved.

What a beautiful picture of the already-not-yet we have in these few verses. And what a wonderful God we are drawn into, that we are allowed to see a glimpse of His agony on our behalf and in that, can see the great love with which He has loved us!

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when it feels like no one shows up

when-it-feels-like

I wrote the following a couple weeks ago when I felt really naked and exposed and too full of shame and guilt to speak these words to anyone, so writing them just felt like the natural thing to do. Then I shoved them away. But they came back again in a couple different conversations, so, I have to share them now.

I still feel pretty naked and exposed at times, but God is teaching me that my shame is not something I can let the enemy have. I need to give Him my shame, and my guilt, and my exposure, and my nakedness. And in that, I know, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that He will receive all of it and all of me, and will sit with me in the fiery furnace.

It’s pretty short, but it’s pretty raw. And it was all I could bear at the time.

Read on:

Sometimes I get sad.
Sometimes I think I’m alone and unlovable and that no one really wants to be my friend.

That I’ve been found out. The real Kayla has finally stood up and she’s repulsive.

I’m feeling a little bit like that lately.
I’ve let my guard down and the enemy has snuck in through the back door. I kinda think he’s like a little mosquito that gets in right before the door shuts and you don’t even know he’s in the house until he’s bitten you 7 times and you start to itch a day later.

That’s how I feel right now.

I feel isolated. Unloved. Alone. Unworthy. And itchy.

I know these feelings are not feelings God delights in my feeling.
I know that God is good and that I am loved and worthy.

But I also feel like God is just kinda letting me lay my head on His holy shoulder and is weeping with me. He’s feeling these things just as I am.
I don’t think He’s telling me to just figure it out and get along with my life.

No.
He’s in the mire.
He’s holding me close, throbbing in pain right alongside me.

When it feels like no one else is showing up, the enemy is probably on the move.
When it feels like no one else is showing up, God is.
When it feels like no one else is showing up, it doesn’t matter – the King of Creation and Lover of my soul never leaves or forsakes me. He has already shown up and will not leave.

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