There are times in all of our lives when our faith has been tested through trials. During these seasons, we may question God’s love, or His ability and desire to help us. It’s during these challenges that what we choose to believe about God and His love will shape how we navigate our difficulty.
Several years ago I watched a documentary on television on the beautiful, late Farrah Fawcett that detailed her battle with cancer. In one scene she was speaking with her father, and he said he was praying for her or, as he put it, “talking to the man upstairs” and asking Him for healing. Farrah asked her dad why God doesn’t always answer prayer—and her dad replied that sometimes God is just too busy.
Too busy? How can anyone trust a god who is too busy so He ignores them, or is not powerful enough to manage the affairs of the world?
In 1967 seventeen-year-old Joni Eareckson Tada dived off a rock into shallow water, broke her neck, and became a quadriplegic. She also believed that God was too busy and that He had abandoned her. Joni thought that just as she was getting ready to dive into the water, God had become distracted with someone else’s problems and turned His back. Thankfully, Joni is now a trophy of God’s grace and a shining light of His love.
Late author C. S. Lewis believed a different lie about God after his wife’s death. At the time, he chronicled his painful feelings in a very transparent book titled A Grief Observed. Lewis didn’t believe that God was too busy but rather that He was cold and distant:
Meanwhile, where is God? A door slammed in your face, and a sound of bolting and double bolting on the inside. After that, silence. . . . There are no lights in the windows. . . . Why is He so present a commander in our time of prosperity and so very absent a help in time of trouble?
During trials, when our feelings scream lies about who God is, when our emotions betray our faith and tell us that God is passive, weak, busy, mean, unloving, or cold and distant, Scripture shouts that He is loving, involved, and all-powerful.
Philippians 1:6 says God will perfect the work He begins in us until the day of Christ Jesus.
Psalm 139 says God knows when we sit, rise, and speak, and He has known about every day of our lives before one of them came to be!
Isaiah 59:1 says “the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear.”
Daniel 4:35 says God “does as He pleases with the powers of heaven and the peoples of the earth.”
Psalm 51:1 says God’s love is unfailing, that He has great compassion, and that He’s forgiving.
Psalm 103:8 says the Lord is gracious.
Are you experiencing a trial? To trust God during trouble, we have to take Him at His Word. We can choose to believe Him regardless of how we feel. He wants to enable us through the power of the Holy Spirit to trust Him. Then, we’ll be able to confidently navigate trials with greater peace.