Chapter 2: Lies Women Believe about God
Day 1: God is good.
Lie #1: “God is not really good. If He were, He would….”
Your talk talks and your walk walks but your walk talks louder than your talk talks.
Let’s agree to start off on the right foot as we begin to look at the most common lies we believe. Rather than saying you know something is a lie/truth, take a moment to consider the way you act. Remember: our actions reveal what we really believe, whether we meant to or not. So let’s look at the evidence in our lives, and then let’s look at God’s word, and let’s commit to make His word our standard of Truth right up front.
The lies we believe about God are particularly dangerous because everything else we believe, everything else in our lives, is built upon this foundation of who we believe God is and how we believe He works.
The first lie that is commonly lived is that God is not really good. We come to this conclusion based on our experiences, our emotions, and our common sense. We believe we know what goodness is, so we set that standard and expect God to live up to it. Do you see the problem here? We’ve set ourselves up to be God. But we’re not God. We know that. Do we? Do we, really? Because I’m not so sure. Our pride tells us that this life is about us, our pleasure, our comfort, and our happiness; therefore, God is also about us, and about giving us those things. And when He doesn’t meet our expectations, we begin to accuse… “God failed me.”
When God does not meet our expectations, we decide God has failed and is therefore not worthy of our trust or obedience. God is no longer trustworthy — we must take control of our own lives. Of course we wouldn’t have to do that if God had just held up His end of the bargain… do you see how ridiculous this all is? And yet I’m sure all of you reading this are thinking, “not me.” But I ask you again, look at your behavior. When tragedy strikes, when you face trouble, turmoil and tragedy, what’s your attitude like? Is it resentful, angry, and accusing? Here’s why.
When we look at our experiences and begin to accuse God as not being good, fair, or right, what we’re actually doing is saying that we have a higher, better moral standard than God. Ouch. I know, right? But if we can’t be real about where this is coming from, we’ll keep doing it. Questioning God’s goodness is a big deal, and we need to keep it a big deal. Don’t minimize Him. Don’t maximize yourself. Don’t say you’re right and God’s wrong. It’s not worth it. Need some assurance on that? Read the book of Job. I’ll give a preview:
Then the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm. He said: Who is this that obscures my plans with words with knowledge? Brace yourself like a man; I will question you and you will answer Me.” (Job 38:1-3)
When I was a small child, I had to learn the difficult lesson of immediate obedience, particularly related to coming when called. While I learned this lesson relatively easily, I’m still trying to teach it to my dog four years after getting him. But I digress. I was instructed that when my parents called me, I was to come immediately; drop everything, don’t stall, don’t delay. No foot dragging, no whining, just come. But as a normal kid would, I struggled from time to time to comply.
However, one day that all changed. I was across the room when my mom called me, and I started fussing. When I finally, slowly, got to her, my mom corrected me, and then talked to me about why I had to obey. She said, “What if the reason I’d called you is there had been a big spider next to you?” “I’d have come right away if I’d known that!” Of course, she said. “But I shouldn’t have to tell you why. You need to trust me. Sometimes there’s not enough time to explain to you, to reason with you, or tell you. Sometimes you just need to come.”
This makes sense to us adults, right? The parent knows things the child does not. When parents tell their kids not to drink bleach, play in the street, or touch the stove, it’s not because they’re bad parents, but they’re good parents. And if they take us to the dentist or make us do our homework, they’re not bad parents, they’re good parents. They’re trying to protect their children, take care of them, and keep them happy and healthy. And their children must understand that, or else they’ll argue, or they’ll do it anyway. Teaching children to trust adults is the key; the dangers come in many ways, and if you must take the time to explain the danger to your child so that they can decide for themselves if they believe the danger is real and then make a choice in how to act… well, by the time you go through all that it’s too late. And you’re not the parent anymore.
The same is true with our relationship with God. Dangers are all around and come at us in all kinds of ways, and when God keeps things from us, or make us do things we don’t want to do, we need to trust Him; it’s not our job to know why, it’s our job to obey. As we get older, as we grow, sometimes these things are explained to us. Sometimes they’re not. And that’s okay. We don’t rest in what we know, we rest in who we know.
This lesson my parents taught me was still theory for a long time, but it was enough. As I got older, it became reality; and I had no clue the danger until afterwards. I had been at my babysitters, playing outside under a tree with a friend. It was a beautiful day and we were quite happy. But my babysitter called us inside. I jumped up and started for the door – calling my friend with me. But oh – she did not want to go! She cried and complained and took forever. I decided to leave her and started for the house while the sitter was still calling her. I’d almost forgotten about it by the end of the day when my dad picked me up. After we got in the car, he told me he was proud of me. “Huh?” He mentioned how I’d come right in when I was called, even though my friend didn’t. Obviously, I hadn’t really thought about it. Immediate obedience had become a habit for me by that point. But then he told me why I had been called inside: there had been a water moccasin in tree over our heads while we played.
The truth is, even if it doesn’t make sense, even if what He’s doing doesn’t feel good, and even if things look bad, hard, or even unfair, God is good and everything He does is good. When I choose to believe this, I can trust Him and begin to experience peace even in times of trouble. I can grow closer to God, rather than push Him away. I can find freedom instead of bondage. I don’t need to know everything. I need to let Him be God so I can be me.
Choose to believe God. He is good, He is on your side, and He will never fail you. The suffering you endure has a reason, and even if you never see it, it’s still there, and it’s still good. Finish strong. Job started out strong – when his wife told him to give up his integrity and just “curse God and die,” he responded: “You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God and not trouble?” Starting strong is important; finishing strong is what counts.
When you believe that God is good, you can give God the right to disrupt your life for your own good. It’s a beautiful thing.
Points to remember:
- God is good and everything He does is good.
- God never makes mistakes.
- There is a difference between what feels good and what is good.
- My job is to obey, not to know why.
- I must choose to walk by faith and not by sight or feelings.
- Freedom is found in surrender.
In a word: passionate. About Jesus, church, ministry, music, reading, family, friends, and sometimes even iced skinny soy mochas.