The Mysterious God

God is always good and God is good, always. But to me, anyhow, God is sometimes mysterious. I often wonder about my past life events, how they steered me to where I am now. Some of how I got to be here was also due to consequences of stepping off God’s path for my life. Remember, God forgives sin but there will always consequences to sin.

About 18 months ago, my wife and I were at a standoff about the house in which we were living, which was in Strawberry Ridge, Valrico. She didn’t want to be in that house and I had just lost my job, so we were both on disability – her, legally blind and me, suffering from diabetic neuropathy. With a limited income, we decided to take refuge in another mobile home park in Plant City. This park was on the outskirts of town and away from public transportation. My wife immediately disliked this. She was too far away from her children and could not get to them save for me driving her there.

Episode after episode of conflict of living in Plant City plagued us. With our doctors in Brandon (18 miles away), it was costly in gas and time for visits. Problems inside the park were greatly mitigating factors in what we were about to do. Rent had increased from $50 per month lower than Valrico to more than we were paying before. Incident after incident had me saying “If this happens one more time we are packing up and leaving”. New incidents came and went and we simply and stubbornly adjusted to them.

Then one day, my wife went into our master bedroom closet and looked up to discover the entire ceiling and upper parts of the walls covered in black mold – a roof leak. The first thing we did is empty the closet and clean everything as best we could. Many of the items were thrown out. The closet door was then shut tight. The next day, we called one of the sales persons who operate in the area and they were sitting with us by 10AM. Little did either of us know at the beginning of that week that a “For Sale” sign would be posted on our lawn by Wednesday. The following week we were looking at a rental property in Valrico, and before the week ended, we had signed a lease to live there for 3 years. Also during that same week, we had an offer from some folks to buy our home, despite knowing about the mold issue. The following Thursday, we were living in our rental!

So what does God have to with all of this? EVERYTHING!!!
God read our hearts and knew how truly unhappy we were living in Plant City. Apparently, He has work for us to do here in Valrico, as well. He manipulated events which pushed us over the edge to leave Plant City and then gave us a place to rent as well as a buyer for our house. What an incredibly inspiring series of events to have lived through. I now tell you that the truth is one and there is only one truth. Jesus Christ is the only truth and God is always good and God is good, always!

Anger

How often do you get angry? I don’t mean just irritated, I mean really angry. I’m talking about being “mad” enough to throw things or even strike someone. As an example, road rage immediately comes to mind for me. There are more and more incidents reported of road rage resulting in the use of a weapon – whether it be a gun, a knife or the car itself.

I have experienced it. I was once angry enough at my wife that I felt like I was lifting my arm up to strike her even though  I had really never moved it. But it felt to me like I had. That’s the time we need to walk away and pray for God’s forgiveness. You see, that kind of anger is not only dangerous to you and everyone around you, but it is also sin. I believe it is born of some other deep-seated bad feelings in our hearts and spirits. It stays there for a while and it stews, then steams and then boils; and when it boils over, it becomes rage.

I think most anger is a product of time plus an unforgiving spirit. You say “I don’t have an unforgiving spirit, I forgive people”. If you have experienced anger nearing the point of rage, I doubt that’s true. If you sit and meditate, pray and listen, God’s spirit will bring the source of your anger to the surface. I can tell you, this is truth. It happened to me. Somewhere in your life, someone has hurt you and you did nothing about it but bury that hurt deep down where you couldn’t feel it any more. Eventually, something happens that causes the boiling anger to surface.

When we are hurt, emotionally, we need to immediately pray over it and ask the Lord for the strength to forgive. It’s never really easy for us. Until we discuss it with God, own it, ask for the strength to forgive and then forgive the person outloud or to their face, when possible, the hurt will continue to fester until one day, you just might injure or even kill yourself and/or someone else.  And here’s the kicker – God cannot forgive you until you forgive others first.  It is written in the Lord’s prayer: “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors“. (Matt 6:12) In the prayer we ask God to forgive us as we forgive others.  So, if you don’t forgive others on an ongoing basis, don’t expect God to forgive you regularly either. (Matt 6:14-15)

Forgiveness is necessary for a clean spirit.  With a clean spirit, you will have a great crown in heaven. (Matt 18:1-5)  But if you leave this life with an unforgiving spirit, anger and hatred, you just may find yourself in a not-so-happy place, for eternity. (Galatians 5:19-21)