2 Corinthians 4:7-10 (NLT)
We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.
Do you ever wonder why me? As a believer, this question takes on a whole new meaning really now doesn’t it. It is a question directed now to the God of all creation. It challenges His Plan. Christians are instructed not to ask such things of their Creator. As a believer, I think that God allows certain pressures, perplexities, discouragements and the like to occur so we will ask just that, “Why me, Lord?” Oh settle down and here me out before you cast judgment and decide to stop reading, because this very well may set you free. It has me to a great extent. Having been faced with many things that seem contrary to God’s Plan for our life, all the details that do not add up to good, a future and hope, and wondering why His Promises and Blessings have not made it to us despite our faithfulness in following Christ leaves us dry. We are empty. It is in these times of great longing that we ask “why me, Lord” or perhaps “where have I gone wrong?” Some may even be as bold to inquire, “God, are you real” or “Jesus, are you even there?” I am beginning to believe that it is in our complete vulnerability and candid transparency with total honesty that we finally begin to tap into faith that is genuine. The pretending is gone. The façade falls apart. We are broken. We need something. We are desperate for change. We seek it with all our heart just to survive.
Let’s stop from this decent into melancholy to flip the coin for a moment. If everything is going your way and you are completely satisfied with your life or at least think you are, when was the last time you cried out to God to come closer. When did you lift your hands and invite Jesus to permeate your mind, soul and body with a refreshing overflow of His Spirit? Yeah, me either. When things are good, we become content and satisfied with our life because just a little bit of His Goodness and Kindness go a very long way. For most of us, it is enough to keep us fat and happy for the rest of our life. So then what? When we meet the Lord face-to-face, we will recognize Him, but will we know Jesus intimately as we should in light of our impending marriage? There is a difference between knowing Jesus and wanting Him. The devil and every demon in hell know the Lord but want nothing to do with Him. We must not only know the Lord but desire Him with all our body, mind and spirit.
2 Kings 4:1-7 (NLT)
One day the widow of a member of the group of prophets came to Elisha and cried out, “My husband who served you is dead, and you know how he feared the Lord. But now a creditor has come, threatening to take my two sons as slaves.” “What can I do to help you?” Elisha asked. “Tell me, what do you have in the house?” “Nothing at all, except a flask of olive oil,” she replied. And Elisha said, “Borrow as many empty jars as you can from your friends and neighbors. Then go into your house with your sons and shut the door behind you. Pour olive oil from your flask into the jars, setting each one aside when it is filled.” So she did as she was told. Her sons kept bringing jars to her, and she filled one after another. Soon every container was full to the brim! “Bring me another jar,” she said to one of her sons. “There aren’t any more!” he told her. And then the olive oil stopped flowing. When she told the man of God what had happened, he said to her, “Now sell the olive oil and pay your debts, and you and your sons can live on what is left over.”
Why me? I am quite certain the widow asked God this question over and over as she and her son’s lives changed dramatically when her husband died. “God, we love you. Lord, we have served you. Father, you know our hearts, why us, why this, why now?” I can think of times when I have asked this and shudder to think how stupid the situation was. I remember asking this question when our son was diagnosed with cancer. It seems to come to this whenever life becomes more than I can bear. It is a cry of desperation. It is an open invitation for God to impart wisdom to us that otherwise we may not have had time for. It breaks the seal that we place over our mind, spirit, soul and heart to allow Him access once again. It comes in our desperation. It comes when fear threatens the limitations of our faith. It is when something yanks on the anchor of confident hope holding our soul. If you do not know God, love Him or choose to serve Him, this is not for you. God is speaking to those who do know Him today, those who love Him wholeheartedly, and those who have served Him as best they could – they are the ones who I believe this message is for today. You are dry and don’t understand why. You are empty but know that you should be filled. You are thirsty for God. You are now hungry for Him, too. Perfect! Everything is going according to His Plan to get His Goodness to you! Finally you are moving out of the way allowing His Perfect Promises to make their way into your life.
This woman was a righteous woman. She was even religious. She was a seeking woman. She was also a desperate woman. She was empty. She came to the prophet because he was the closest thing to God she could find to ask – “Why me? What next?” She just could not believe that this is how it was supposed to be for His Beloved and she wanted what she had been promised. The message is clear bring me an empty vessel and I will fill it. Stop trying to do all the right things. Stop trying to negotiate with the world. Stop trying to pretend that you have it all together when you don’t. Stop trying to be who God called you to be long enough to allow Him to mold you instead. God’s Plan was not that she would just get by. His Plan was for abundance. All she needed was an empty jar to catch it.
Luke 15:16-17 (NLT)
“The young man became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything. When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger!’”
We have a great treasure. It is our inheritance. But like the boy who squandered his all away, we do the same thing. We have a great treasure but stop seeking our Father when we become complacent with what we have and where we are. This young man had to find himself face down in a pig pen eating with the hogs to decide that maybe living in His Father’s House was just a little bit better. He ran home. What is it going to take for you to run home? This life doesn’t matter if we do not develop a deep and abiding connection to Christ. I am sure the young man thought for a moment, “Why me?” But then he figured it out. He did not belong there but in His Father’s House. God has allowed you to find your way to this dry place in order for you to hunger and thirst for His Righteousness which will always lead to total and complete satisfaction in Him.
Matthew 5:6 (NLT)
God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice for they will be satisfied.
God blesses those who hunger. He blesses those who thirst. Dry seasons promote thirst. Emptiness produces hunger. Why me? Because God wants more for you than you can even think of to ask for yourself. (Ephesians 3:20) While you are making a comfortable place in the hog pens of life, He has a place reserved in the palace for you to live forever. Pressure produces a need for change which causes us to seek it out. We become desperate to find it just for some relief. This pursuit always produces complete satisfaction though it is uncomfortable in the beginning. Are you feeling pressed today? Are you a bit perplexed? Perfect. God is getting ready to change your life for the better. Are you feeling broken? Are you empty? Awesome. Now God can fill you up with the good things that He has planned and promised for your life.
John 3:30 (NLT) He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.
Why me? Why you? Because as He becomes greater and greater and I become less and less, I will be satisfied. I will find contentment in faith and hope in God alone. He is really all I need. With this in mind, maybe I should change my “why me” to “Yes, me!”
Psalm 107:8-9 (NLT)
Let them praise the Lord for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them. For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.