Our stories pave a path of freedom for others. But sharing our stories is scary. It takes vulnerability to release them into the world. It is a process of trust. Trust doesn’t come easy. It doesn’t come without trial. There is doubt and self-talk that interrupts trust. It takes intentional effort to keep it out. But the process is worth it.
We trust a big God; a good God. Yet our good God allows bad things to happen: very bad things—Parkland shooting type of bad things. I don’t pretend to have answers to the bad. It is easy to say everything happens for a reason. But that simply isn’t true. There is no conceivable reason why 17 innocent lives were taken on February 14, 2018. There is no reason gun violence has stripped people of their lives in Chicago in the thousands.
I do not understand the why behind God allowing this to happen. I’m not a theologian, but I doubt even the theologian could come up with a plausible explanation. But I still choose to trust God. Why?
In John 8:58, Jesus claims he knows Abraham. The leaders sarcastically mock him saying, “You are not even 50 years old – and you have seen Abraham?” And Jesus responds, “I am telling you the truth. Before Abraham was born, I Am.”
God is the I AM. He is the before and after. He is the beginning and end. He is the why. We can grapple with it. We can dislike it. We can doubt it. But ultimately, the why is not ours to handle. God is in control of the why – not us.
Trusting God, like Bethany Anderson said on my podcast recently, is like panning for gold. When we trust God, He will sift and shake the unnecessary particles out of our life. This filtering process is not comfortable. It isn’t meant to be.
God knit our DNA spirals for a reason. We each have a story and we each have the ability to act and make a difference in this world. Will we trust enough to step into our calling and act? Will we be brave enough to push into the sifting to find the gold that is hidden?
These are bold questions for a very shaky actor. But I know God has a purpose for me and for you. It is up to us to trust and step out of our comfort zone and believe it.