Why Have Struggles


FreeImages.com/Alberto Camin

He took him outside and said, “Look at the sky and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” Then He said to him, “Your offspring will be that numerous.” (Genesis 15:5 HCSB)

“Let it go.”

“What will be will be.”

“It will all work out in the end.”

Have you ever had anyone say these things to you? Do you say this to others? I have to answer yes to both questions.

I know these phrases are meant to be helpful and they are. But, I’m going to be honest and admit that a small part of me find it aggravating. So, I have to ask myself “Why?” The answer; because that small part of me doesn’t want to “Let it go.” I’m afraid what will be isn’t what I want it to be, and it works out all wrong.

Really, those phrases sound like we are leaving it all up to chance. Or, that it all depend on destiny. As a Christian, I don’t believe in chance, luck, or destiny. I believe God has a perfect plan for me but gives me the choice to choice the plan as He has written or to make my own. The problem with me is this; I am not perfect and my plan isn’t going to be as good as His.

So, when I let worry in and I don’t want to “Let it go,” what am I really telling God? The answer: I don’t trust You to work it out and I am impatient for Your promises.

But, why is life such a struggle sometimes?

In Genesis 15, God promised Abram (later renamed Abraham) that he would have offspring as numerous as the stars. Abram and his wife, Sarai, (later renamed Sarah) didn’t have any children at the time. Abram questioned God, but He promised that his descendants would one day own the land from “the brook of Egypt to the Euphrates River.”

What is interesting is that God tells Abram that he will have more descendants than he can count, but they will spend 400 years in slavery. He was given a promise and was told the struggle that would occur before the promise would be fulfilled.

All he had to focus on was the promise. Yet, he and his wife had to wait for the promise despite not having any kids. Sometimes the waiting is the struggle.

Sarai got impatient. She had a slave named Hagar. She talked Abram in taking her slave as a wife so she could have a family through her slave. Abram did. When Hagar discovered she was pregnant she was disrespectful to Sarai. In turn, Sarai complained to her husband and said, “You are responsible for my suffering!” (Genesis 16:5 HCSB) I find that so hilarious. She was the one who talked him into it but now blamed him.

In the end, Sarai had her son when she was about 90 years old and Abram was 100. It’s hard when we want things to happen now, but sometimes for the promises to be fulfilled, we have to experience the struggles. The struggles make us grow up. We learn from them and become wiser. I’m not sure if Sarai learned anything from the experience but I have. I learned that I need to wait on the Lord and to never doubt. His promises always happen.

Lord, help me to be patient. To work at doing your will and trust that it will work out the way you want. Thank you for the best plan for my life.

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