Regardless of my experiences, situation, or relationship, God has prepared and is walking me through each day of my life.
It’s easy to compare my sufferings to another’s–better or worse, longer or shorter. It’s easy to make judgements about the severity or ease of my suffering based on what I see in others’ lives. But that is not God’s measure. He does not give me grace according to someone else’s suffering. He gives me grace for mine.
God gives grace because the burden, the weight, I experience here on earth, is not for me. It’s for Him. I will benefit. I will be blessed. I will experience God personally as I come to Him in faith through Jesus. But He gives grace to show Himself faithful.
He provides for my daily needs as I come to Him:
This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him
And saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him,
And rescues them. (Psalm 34:6-7)
He doesn’t rescue me from someone else’s trouble or someone else’s need. He hears when I cry. He saves me our of all my troubles. The angel of the Lord encamps around me. He rescues me.
O taste and see that the Lord is good;
How blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!
O fear the Lord, you His saints;
For to those who fear Him there is no want. (Psalm 34:8-9)
In order to take hold of His grace, I must taste of Him; He calls me to set aside my expectations, my standards, my idea of what is right and wrong, what I will or will not do, what I think is reasonable and best. And as I take of His kindness and truth, savor His love, make His Word part of my spiritual bloodstream, I experience His goodness. I test, prove, demonstrate how fulfilling He is.
Being filled with His goodness allows me to trust Him with my decisions. This is what it means to fear the Lord. When I fear Him, His truth determines my decisions. I weigh my thoughts, plans, and future against His Word. If, instead, I am swayed by another’s desires or response, I fear them. They drive my thoughts and actions. When I am set upon God’s ways, when I fully trust Him, I fear Him. My daily life is evidence that God is who He says He is and He will do what He says He will do. (Hebrews 11:6)
Today, regardless of other’s circumstances or view, am I crying out to the Lord–not at Him, but to Him? Am I drawing on His grace? Am I drinking of His kindness and goodness to me (me!) in Jesus Christ? Am I honest about my own burden, personal suffering and its cost? And whose standard am I living by? My own? My husband’s? My church or pastor’s?
Personalizing God in our groaning, in this earthly tent, is for His glory and honor, showing His provision–not because of my need, but because of His power, might, and love. And out of His storehouse, He has provided the grace I need for this very moment.