Friday, October 17, 2008

Angry at God?

Can we be angry at God?

It happens from time to time, from season to season. If we are honest, we've all experienced it. It happens. Even if we don't think it in our minds. Even if we don't feel it in our hearts. Even if we don't utter it from our lips. So, if it's there, why don't we simply express it? God already knows way before the thought is even close to formulated.

It happened to Jonah.

Jonah was angry at the Lord's compassion. But Jonah was greatly displeased and became angry. He prayed to the Lord, "O Lord, is this not what I said when I was still at home? That is why I was so quick to flee to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. Now, O Lord, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live." But the Lord replied, "Have you any right to be angry?" Jonah 4:1-4

Simply answered, I say no, I do not have a right to be angry.

But...it still happened to me.

Part of the trial I've been enduring the last almost 16 months is maintaining my home by myself while trying to sell it. I truly have a love-hate relationship with push mowing and weeding my yard. The yard with lots of trees, lots of flowers, two ponds, hills, dips, and bumps. I say I don't mind and I don't think I do for the most part. I listen to God's music and try to make it a time of worship, reflection, and prayer.

However, on two distinct occasions that has not been the result. Instead, mowing the yard has stirred up angry feelings about being left to maintain this yard and home by myself. Those feelings led to other intense feelings that come from the emotions of abandonment and rejection.

I've long since repented and turned from any actions that would've caused this rejection and abandonment; therefore, leaving me with the thoughts of why am I still seemingly being "punished". I'm not being punished by God but it can feel that way when I don't see Him rectifying and restoring upon my repentance.

In the past months I've wondered why God hasn't done something as simple as selling my house. I realize that my prayer to restore is much larger, involves others, and will need time and cooperation of His children. However, why can't part of my life just "go on" by selling my house?

So, in the midst of my anger toward those who've abandon me (one in a great way, others in lesser ways), I began to question the ultimate --"God why have You forsake me? Why aren't You doing anything in these two areas of my life? Why won't You simply sell my house and provide a fresh start for now?"

This conversation continued. Going back and forth from being directed at God to being directed at others in my life (or rather not in my life currently). It climaxed with words never uttered, words that break my heart, words that spear my soul, and words that fill my spirit with regret.

"I'm angry at You, God."

Do not be angry beyond measure, O Lord; do not remember our sins forever. Oh, look upon us, we pray, for we are all your people. Isaiah 64:9

I've since said I'm sorry more times than I can count. I have felt His forgiveness and understanding while still filled with remorse. My Lord has shown me so much compassion. That evening after this intense emotional release and sobbing fit, my Lord sent me a reminder of His fourth fruit: patience. Who else sent it to me but my realtor whom I also consider a friend since our now 16-month business relationship.

What a timely message from my Abba Father reminding me He is here and for me to wait on Him.

The Lord is good to those who wait on Him, to the soul who seeks Him. Lamentations 3:25

As I prepared for church I asked the Lord to give me a heart of worship especially since my heart had been hard, hurt and heavy towards Him the night prior. Tired of listening to the religious program on tv, I switched the station only to have my ears welcomed to one of my favorite worship songs, of which I've forgotten the name. Oh, how that song filled my heart.

Though the sermon at church was titled "Why Now?" and spoke of the reasons for our new building campaign beginning now, I again found the message from God timely and personal. Pastor spoke about God's timing and it refreshed my mind of how pivotal God's timing is in my life. He is trustworthy and His timing is trustworthy.

Speaking of trust, I think it is only poignant to end with my life verse
.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

Trusting Him and His Timing,


16 comments:

Runner Mom said...

You know, I think that admitting to God how you felt was a part of the answer that is coming to you now! The release of those feelings is so important. I'm glad that you were honest with God. He will heap blessings upon you! The scripture from Prov. is one that I read this morning too! I just love it!

Love ya,
Susan

Sharon said...

My Friend,
OOOO did I feel you walking with the lawn mower, I also felt you as you were rakeing those leaves. I wish I could reach through the computer and hug you!! SOOO if you will reach around your computer you might feel that hug I sent your way,,,,along with all your other friends here, we are all hugging you!!
Peace of allllllll understanding!
He Loves you so much Paula. But you know we must have patience.
I know it's hard sometimes, keep the Faith!
The way the stocks are all crazy, and everything that is going on, it's making life alittle tougher
but these are our test times.
I am praying for you Paula, I am going to a huge prayer meeting tonite.
I have gotten angry at God too, and I know it's not right. Just hang in there.
Be Blessed my friend
Sharon

Nicole said...

Oh dear Paula! I agree with runner mom when she says that she was glad you were honest with God. Most times that is the first step to where we want to be. We have to be honest just like you said in your post because God already knows and He's just waiting for us to get there and realize it! The Lord has big plans for your life. I don't claim to know what they are but I do know that He loves you sooooooo much and wants you to know that!!!

Love you my friend!
Nicole

much2ponder said...

Wow Paula, I was in it with you woman! I mean as you talked about going back and forth with God and then as your heart was melted by his compassion. I know that place all to well.

And your scripture verse at the end is one that I have prayed and asked the Lord to remind me of again and again. He is always right on time and he has your best in mind. Praying for your 16 month relationship with your Realtor, that you would see the fruit of both of your labor sometime in the near future. You are loved:)

Carol said...

My Sweet Friend,

Oh how I feel what you said. Like others have said, I think it's good to be honest with God, it breaks down our walls, so we can let him refill those parts of our heart and soul with Him.

I have been there many times, asking why me, why now, and I don't want to do this Lord, and each time after letting all that go he's filled me with peace.

I pray for you daily, and so wish we didn't live so far apart. I would love to sit and have a coffe and prayer and worship time with you.

God will move and when you see it you'll be amazed, and we'll be here to stand in awe and praise with you.

Love you,
Carol

Edge of Design said...

Sometimes I think that when we tell God we're angry at Him, it's not really because we're angry at Him. It's because we're in such pain that we have a difficult time expressing it into words and "I'm angry at you God" is the easiest our minds can comprehend. What I believe God hears, is I need you so much because I hurt so bad only you can touch me and comfort me where it hurts. The intensity of my disappointment and frustration hurts so bad that I just can't stand it anymore and I want to be angry at someone. I'm thankful that I can be "angry at you God", because I am confident that no matter how honestly raw I can possibly get, it will never change your love for me and you will never leave me. No matter what! So many others have said that but you're the only one that means it and I feel safe telling you I'm angry even though I say it's with you, it's not.

Joyfulsister said...

Hi Paula,
If there is one thing I know is the Lord loves our openess and honesty with him. And you have given him that as your journey with him began. I remember the first time we met, since then I have seen you grow, and blossom. And in all circumstances everyone is allowed a grieving time or season. And it is what we do in that season that will either make us, or break us, leave us better, or bitter. like a seed in the darkness of the soil you my friend have taken root in your journey and will bloom in the beauty of his holiness and bring glory unto the Lord having the victory through Jesus Christ. You are an overcomer, you are a vessel for the Lord touching the hearts of those who come here each day.



Hugz Lorie

Susan said...

Hey Paula,

Thanks so much for stopping by the other day. (As you can see I'm really behind on visits!)

I've seen and read many of your kind comments and was excited to finally meet you.

I don't much about your journey, but after reading this I can see God is in the midst of doing something wonderful for you.

A new season is just ahead.

Thanks for sharing your heart and how God met you and ministered.

I wrote a post on the heart today.

Blessings to Paula♥

Wendy said...

Girl, hugs from me. How important it is to admit our feelings to God (even though He already knows them!!).
Thanks for your comment on my blog. I agree, that we should be able to worship anywhere and truly I try. But I also know that God has a plan for where we are to plug into the ministries He's blessed us with talent and passion for. I can't wait to find that place...I really miss helping to create a place/atmosphere where women can be authentic with each other and open to God in their lives. You know?
Much love my dear friend!
Wendy

Melanie said...

Wow.. what a great post, Paula! I love the verse you shared from Proverbs. It is so very true.. "trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding". Such strong words. Words full of so much meaning and wisdom.

Amy said...

Hi Paula,

I too, have been angry with God, and, of course, followed quickly with remorse.:)

Like you said, He knows what we are thinking and feeling anyway, so we might as well be honest with Him.

His timing is perfect, but in our human flesh, it is not always easy to comprehend or understand.

I am praying for you, friend. God has great and wonderful things in store for you! He will honor your faithfulness to Him!

I'm sending you (((Big Hugs!)))
Much love,
Amy:)

andi said...

Great post Paula! Thankful that He is encouraging you as you express the emotions of your soul. Praying...

Abbasgirl said...

Even though He knows what is in our heart, it is amazing how quickly He moves when we really talk to Him about it and truly repent.

Lord thank You for this sweet sister's faith and trust in You. I ask You to sell her house in Your perfect timining and have her new home You have prepared for her ready to go. Please give her a special blessing today, one she knows is from You. In Jesus' Name I pray.

christi28 said...

hi paula!
great post. i do believe like the others daid that God is so working in you!

i personally think it is ok to be angry about your circumstances and i think it ok to tell and express that to God. He can take it! and i think he loves it when we are that open and honest with Him.

praying for you sweet friend!

Connie said...

Paula...you're gonna be okay! I've been there angry at God...He knows and loves us anyway. One day at a time! Praying for you..Connie

Meridith said...

For me it is so easy to get angry with God b/c of the circumstances in my life... my instinct is to blame Him and once again build up the wall with bricks of anger and bitterness.

Telling Him how I'm feeling is the first step towards healing... only by admiting to Him what He already knows can I begin to tear down that wall once again....

This time the wall is high, and it's taking longer to tear it down... but I'm getting there....

(((hugs)))