I recently applied for a new position at work for which I was not the ideal candidate. Most of my Christian co-workers would say “if it’s the Lord’s will it will come”. Others would say “I’ll pray for you that the Lord’s will be done”.
I prayed and said to the Lord that whether I get the job or not I wanted his will to be done. I applied for the position and after lots of hard work and some “miracles” along the way I got the job.
All my friends were happy for me. They all said that this was definitely from the Lord and they all agreed that I was the right person for the job. I couldn’t have agreed more. However, after a while, the euphoria gave way to profound disappointment. This new position was not anything like what I imagined.
Every day presented new challenges that I was not prepared for. But I was not going to give up. This was the Lord’s will and I was not going to shrink back. After a few months I came to the conclusion that this new position was not the right job for me.
The question that everyone was asking me was” wasn’t this the Lord’s will”?
Most of my Christian co-workers would ask me” if this was the Lord’s will why it ended up this way?” Maybe it wasn’t his will after all. The assumption was that if this was the Lord’s will the outcome would have been different. It would have worked out. So it must have not been the Lord’s will.
Have you ever tried something that you whole heartedly felt that it was the Lord’s will only to see a contrary result? Over the years I have talked to many people who became disillusioned in regard to the “will of the Lord”.
There are many misconceptions regarding “the will of the Lord”. We are a pragmatic and result oriented people. Whatever works must be right and whatever that does not produce the desired result must not be right.
The misunderstanding lies in “right results”. We equate success from our vantage point with the Lord’s will and failure with not being his will.
However when we consider the lives of biblical characters we see disappointments from an earthly point of view that was the Lord’s will.
Consider the life of Joseph. Was it the Lord’s will for Joseph to be sold into slavery? How about the Israelites journey through the wilderness. They encountered one difficulty after another, did the Lord lead them to those places and was it His will for them?
All of these experiences have their places in our lives. There are many reasons why the Lord leads us through these experiences and disappointments. In these places the Lord reveals us to ourselves and what is in our hearts.
Through these seeming disappointments we need to remain faithful to the Lord and to his goodness toward us. The outcome of events in our lives does not nearly do as much harm as our reactions and responses to them. Our reaction and the way we interpret these events could do us the ultimate harm.
We need to ultimately trust that he will work all things together for our good and not judge the Lord by the outcome of the events of our lives. But trust him and his goodness in spite of the results in our lives.
May the Lord be with you all