We say funny things as believers. Well, funny as in a little weird. But not funny for the way they cause us to stumble in our Christian faith.
The saying below is one of them. It implies that God will not let me down. Ugh. Please don’t say things like this. Please don’t forward them.
I’ve felt let down by God plenty of times. Like when I did all the things I knew to do as a believer and still ended up falling apart in depression, anxiety, or letting angry words and actions spew forth. Or when it seemed my marriage was gong to end despite all the things I thought I did right. Despite all the prayers I prayed. Or when God didn’t send what I needed the way I thought He should provide it.
If I believed God would never let me down, and then He did, I think I might give up on God. Plenty of people have.
When we expect God to do what we want, we will inevitably face disappointment. God will let us down, but he will never fail us. There’s a difference.
One suggests God does what we want.
The other remembers God will be with us when we feel let down by Him not doing what we want.
This tweet was sent by someone with tens of thousands of followers. It made me stop short and sigh because I’m saddened by messages like this. When pop theology becomes feel good messages of the day, we lose out. We end up trusting ourselves more and God less. That’s never a good thing.
Statements like this are heard by struggling believers who find it hard to trust God and want things their own way. This gives them one more reason to believe in a God who isn’t real. He will end up disappointing them, and they may walk away instead of finding the God who sustains them.
Even non-Christians see things like this and respond, “What in the world?” Sometimes they are quicker to notice when Christians turn to self over God because maybe they’ve seen this kind of hypocrisy before.
If we want to grow spiritually and emotionally mature as believers, we must start to recognize when subtle confections cover up solid food. Tricky words like this offer momentary sugary sweet highs which never sustain the energy needed for a solid Christian life of faith.
God WILL let you down.
God IS still GOOD.
How can these two co-exist?
Because God is God and we are not. God is not a powerful source who simply bends to our will. What we think is good, is not always of God.
What we want is often in direct conflict with what God wants for us. This conflict gives us Choosean opportunity to surrender, confess sin, rely on God more, and be transformed. But if we expect God to do things our way, we will indeed be let down.
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 ESV
We want things that are easy. We want comfort. We want delight in sensual things. We want to feel good – all the time.
Y’all, that’s not a realistic picture of living as a Christian, or even as a human. We don’t see things accurately as humans. We can’t choose rightly all the time because we live in a sinful world and our humanness is inclined to pursue fleshly desires over the Father’s heart.
We NEED someone who is unmarred by sin and wholly Holy. We NEED God. We need the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Simple phrases like this get eaten up like cotton candy. They dissolve into a sticky mess in our hearts.
Please, please, dear church of believers whom I love dearly, take a moment to consider this. It’s OK and good that God will let us down, because God wants better for us than we want for ourselves.
Please don’t think that just because your circumstances are hard, that God has left you. He hasn’t. We must remember that His ways are not understandable, but they are always better.
The good He wants doesn’t always look like the good we want. Thank God.