What a wonderful feeling it is to know you’re loved.
As an only child, I know what it’s like to be the center of attention. I never had to share the bathroom , and rarely had someone else eat what I wanted in the fridge. There was no fighting over toys and throwing insults at each other for fun. The love was never shared, never divided, never stolen.
Up until the Resurrection of Christ, the Israelites were only children. They soaked up the love of their Father, not having to share His love and mercy. Despite their (many) mistakes, moments of disobedience and rebellion, God forgave them. Time after time, the Lord guided them into victory and prosperity. They were blessed.
And then, Christ rose from the dead. Suddenly, the Israelites were blessed with a brand new baby sibling. Now, all of the love and mercy and grace given solely to them was divided and shared. They no longer felt the unconditional love as their own.
In Romans 9, Paul speaks as an experienced older brother or relative. He wisely tells the Israelites that sometimes things simply aren’t fair.
There are moments in our faith where we see others prevailing over trials and situations, and we feel jipped. Other people seem to be able to grin and bear it, but you’re feeling ragged and beat up by your circumstances. Sometimes, it looks like God blesses others exponentially more than us and all we want to do is say “no fair.”
But Paul reminds us that God is the sovereign Father. He decides who He is merciful with and when. God is able to see the character of each of His children, and can therefore bless each one according to their situation. God’s love is universal, but much like an earthly father, His love is different with each child. His heart meshes with the personality of each of His kids. His grace is given when each child needs it. It might seem unfair that your friend or an acquaintance at church has what you’ve been praying for, but God knows you every need. He knows what your next step looks like. He is aware of your problems and cares about your struggles.
Don’t blame God for your troubles. Don’t blame Him for the blessings others receive. Allow Him to be a father who loves on each of His children uniquely. He is careful to provide at the right time in the right way. Trust His decisions. Praise Him even when you must wait.
Featured image by Paz Arando