Recently I was talking with a friend about facing challenges in life. We were discussing how hard it can be to ask God for the things we need. My friend had a unique take on the matter. “If God has asked me to do something,” she stated matter-of-factly, “then He needs to provide the means to make it happen. It’s God’s problem.”
The logic of her statement startled me so much I decided to listen to it. It does, after all, sound logical. If God has given me a task to complete, will He not also give me the tools and money and resources I need? It sounds obvious, but God seems to be in the habit of provision.
Sure, we need to do our part. If there’s a problem, especially one of our own making, we need to take responsibility for our contribution to that problem. But God can do His part too, the stuff that is too big for us, like forgiveness and healing and divine behind-the-scenes assistance.
I recently needed God’s help with finding a new job. It took a couple of months, and I was unemployed for a short time, but the you-beaut job did show up. Interestingly, if I had just taken any old job, I would have avoided the whole uncomfortable period of unemployment. Instead I sat in the disquieting unknown and trusted God to sort it out. And He did. Not only did He provide me with the you-beaut job, He used the opportunity to deepen my trust in Him.
He used the opportunity to deepen my trust in Him.
I’ve known God to provide money, food, accomodation, petrol, clothes, baby seats and encouragement when it was needed. But in my fierce independence I sometimes find myself saying to God, “No, I don’t really need Your help with this. Let me have a go. I’ll be right.” People might offer to pray for me, and my response will be, “No thanks, I’m good.” As though it is important that I do not appear weak or needy to my friends, or even to God.
If you’re like me, trying to prove yourself to others and to God, let me pose this idea: if we decline God’s help, then we deny Him the opportunity to show His generosity and beauty and kindness. It would be like getting a pile of presents for your birthday, then saying to the gift-givers, “I don’t need any of these. I’m good.”
It is countercultural to entrust our needs to an invisible being. It is countercultural to admit that we need others, to give up the façade of independence. I would even go so far as to say it is countercultural to give up stress and worry. It seems crazy not to worry when something is lacking. Yet God does not rule by worry, but by love. And how He loves us. That is good news.
If you are following God as best as you know how – which is all any of us can ever hope to do – and you are in need of money, time, inspiration, relationships, a job, healing, clarity or answers of some sort, take a risk and entrust it to God. Give Him a chance to show you His goodness, instead of insisting, “I’m good.”
What problems in your life are actually God’s problems? What needs can you entrust to Him? Do you need to reach out to others for prayer today?