“Thus says the LORD:
‘What wrong did your fathers find in me
that they went far from me,
and went after worthlessness, and became worthless?…
Be appalled, O heavens, at this;
be shocked, be utterly desolate, declares the LORD,
for my people have committed two evils:
they have forsaken me,
the fountain of living waters,
and hewed out cisterns for themselves,
broken cisterns that can hold no water.’”
Jeremiah 2:5, 12-13
What wrong do we find in our God that we go after other things, that we push Him to the side so we can focus elsewhere? Does He take too long to come through for us? Does He say “No” to our requests too often? Does He command us to live in ways that don’t line up with what we want to do? Does He lead us down paths that are too hard or in a different direction than we asked? Do we resent the fact that living for Christ means forsaking our pride and admitting we can’t do it all on our own and He knows better than we do?
Our perception of who God is can be so affected by how caught up we are in our own wants and expectations. He doesn’t show up as quickly as we think He should, or in the right way, and our heart declares that He doesn’t care about us as much as He claims so we need to take care of things ourselves. He demands too much of us, so we rise up in defense of our will and cast Him aside so we can live life as we want.
How do we allow our view of God to become so twisted? For those of us in Christ, we have experienced the most wondrous miracle of all—God saving us with His unmatched power and grace, making our soul come alive and pouring Himself into our heart. We have been reconciled with Him. And since that moment, He has been speaking truth to our heart through His Word and His Spirit about who He is. Yet we allow circumstances to twist that truth. We let the enemy put doubts in our mind. We let our pride rise up and demand that God give us what we believe will make us happy.
We need to remember that our God is the Fountain of Living Waters. Nothing else will satisfy as He does. Everything else is a broken cistern that can’t hold any water at all. It all fails us. It all leaves us unsatisfied. Our view of life is extremely small. Our God, however, can see all things from beginning to end. Every detail, carefully chosen and woven into His beautiful tapestry. A tapestry that will leave us in delighted wonder at His timing and His perfection.
Sometimes our God does make us wait to see how He’s working. But He is strengthening our faith and making us more like Him in the waiting. Our faith is not in vain—He does act for those who wait for Him. And He won’t show up too late. He will come through for us in the most flawless timing.
He says “No” to us at times. Which no one likes to hear. But it isn’t because He is withholding good; it’s because He wants us to hold out for that which is better than we can imagine. If we settle for less than all that God has for us, we miss out on the wondrous glory of His grace.
We are commanded to live a life that is holy and righteous, which means forsaking actions that our sinful nature enjoys. There are paths where God leads us that are difficult and unexpected. And we can’t do it on our own. But God is with us. He is our shield and our strength. He is our song, even in the night. He will sustain us. He will empower us to live for Christ. He will fill us with joy as we obey Him—joy that is much more full and satisfying than any other kind of happiness.
“You know in your hearts and souls, all of you, that not one word has failed of all the good things that the LORD your God promised concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one of them has failed.”
“For the LORD God is a sun and shield;
the LORD bestows favor and honor.
No good thing does he withhold
from those who walk uprightly.”