Wishing Our Woes Away

Do you ever wish for a magic wand? When I was little, I wanted a magic wand so that I could have limitless wishes. I couldn’t understand why the princesses in fairytales always wasted their wishes on trivial things when they could wish for a magic wand and have an endless supply of wishes. (Clearly, princesses are all dumbbells.)

With a single *poof*, you could make a cute boyfriend, a big paycheck, or a new car appear; and you could make an annoying friend, an exhausting health problem, or a broken marriage disappear. You wouldn’t have to worry about paying bills, fixing relationships, or submitting to unfair rules.

If you’re like me, you’ve probably asked God to make certain situations disappear. I wish my problems would go away and never come back, and I know He has the power to make this happen. In a sense, He holds the magic wand. Ultimately, He decides how the universe runs. He created the world, and He can destroy it right now if that’s what He wanted to do. He could make all of our problems vanish.

No more insomnia, back pain, broken hearts, loneliness, worry, hurt feelings, frustration, stress, nervousness, or anger (to name a few common issues).

As I think about my own struggles, I want to become bitter. Actually, I have already become bitter. I don’t know why God isn’t resolving my issues.

The last thing I want to hear is that my suffering happens for a reason, that my tears are not cried in vain, and that I’m not alone. When I start to hear something along those lines, I begin daydreaming, rolling my eyes, or falling asleep. I DON’T WANT TO HEAR THAT MY STRUGGLES HAVE A PURPOSE WHILE I AM STRUGGLING.

But it’s the only thing that is going to keep me afloat and keep me sane (though I sometimes wonder if I am).

I get that you’re sick of your life. I just wrote about that last week. You’re sick of going to church, sick of reading your Bible, and sick of praying. You feel like all of your efforts are pointless and silly. Why bother? If God won’t fix your life, why bother trying to please Him?

Because His “power is perfected in weakness” (1 Corinthians 12:9). Here’s a bigger picture:

And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10 NASB)

His grace is enough. His power lives in us when we boast of our weaknesses. We can be satisfied living with struggles because He makes us strong when we are weak.

Knowing this won’t make your troubles go away. It won’t make the stress of a math test or an irritating co-worker vanish into thin air. It won’t remove the pain from a health problem or from losing a loved one.

But without this truth, we are hopeless. This provides a flicker of hope for us. It can get you through another day, another irritation, another heartbreak, another illness, or another trial if you let it.

This truth isn’t a magic wand that will fix everything, but it’s the closest substitute we have.

Maybe in heaven, we can ask God why we had to endure certain trials (although, by then, I think we will have forgotten all about them). For now, simply focus on God’s Truth. I don’t care how annoyed you are with your Bible. Keep clinging to its promises because without them, we’re hopeless.

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