"God, You know the plans You have for Joe and what a great guy He is. Please help Joe remember that You are fighting for him and that You have a better plan for him than this. Lord..."
All of the sudden there was loud bang and we both looked up in surprise. Half a block away was a car accident, in the middle of a busy street. One man was rear-ended into an electrical pole. I called the police and Joe ran towards the accident. He told the driver who hit the pole to stay in the car, but the driver was too dazed to understand and climbed out anyway.
Trying to prevent a secondary accident, Joe ran down the road another hundred feet or so and started waving cars into the only open lane. He even stepped out into the street, to make sure that people understood they needed to move over.
When the police and fire arrived we headed back toward my parked car and his temporarily abandoned backpack.
As I turned to go Joe said, "I sure hope that accident wasn't our fault..."
I must have looked confused... "Our fault?"
Joe continued... "We kind of distracted God for a minute."
Have you ever had something bad happen to you, or seen something bad happening to someone else and wondered where God was in that moment? Why would He let this happen?
Many people will misquote Romans 8:28 and say that the horrible thing "happened for a reason" or that God wanted us to learn a lesson from it. I can assure you that isn't true.
It is Satan who comes to steal, kill, and destroy.
Jesus came that we could have life more abundantly!
God will work all those things together for the good of those who are following Him, but he does not make bad things happen, or even "allow" bad things to happen in order to make something good happen.
God didn't give you cancer or cause you to get laid off. He didn't give you depression so you could learn from it. Most importantly, He didn't kill that person you love, who you still miss every day.
I absolutely believe that when something bad happens to us, God's heart breaks too.
He doesn't want to see us suffering... but He gave humans free will, and we often use it to make bad choices that affect us and others. That's not God trying to teach us something... that's Satan fighting to steal, kill, and destroy.
God Who has numbered every hair on our head, Who knew us before we were formed in the womb, Who rejoices over us with loud singing, does not get distracted. He doesn't forget about us. He doesn't send things to hurt us.
If He takes care of the lilies in the field and the sparrows in the air, He will surely continue to be with us. We have to make the choice to rest in Him and have faith in His promises.
There is a lot happening in the world. It makes sense that God could get distracted by "more important" matters, right? That's why Satan uses that lie on us to often. Don't believe it.
"Don't worry about that," I told Joe, "God doesn't get distracted."
You need to remember that too. God knows exactly what is going on with you at all times. He can't be distracted from His love for YOU! You are God's favorite!
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,
for those who are called according to his purpose.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have
life and have it abundantly.
Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God.
Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.