When Life Doesn’t Make Sense
Sometimes it seems that life just doesn’t make sense. Your dreams, goals, and ambitions are not aligning with your present reality and the end desire is no where in sight. Tragedy strikes, loss of a loved one, cancer, a dramatic turn in finances, a sudden career shift, and so many other things can cause us all to sit back and wonder.
Why me? Why them? Why now? What have I / they done?
Those are definitely questions I’ve found myself asking God at one time or another. Over time as I’ve probed God with my questions, He’s drawn me to the stories of David, Joseph, and Job; men who found themselves in unexplainable circumstances, and I imagine asking the question, “Why?” Hopefully their stories will encourage you on your own journey as they have with mine.
Caves: David’s Story
You know the story. David spends his childhood cast away from his family and a nuisance to his brothers, left to the fields to care for the stinky, mangy sheep. All of a sudden his life takes a drastic turn when the prophet Samuel comes to town and anoints him as the one to eventually take over the crown. Around the same time King’s Saul health is suffering and he needs a gifted lyre player who can play sweet melodies to cast out the evil spirits around him.
Enter David. He is welcomed into the King’s service as the gifted musician, and eventually volunteers to defeat Goliath. We all know how that story ends. As time goes on David wins more victories the people begin to shout, “Saul has slain his thousands and David the 10’s of thousands.”
With Saul losing the popularity vote he begins to get jealous and sees David as the competition trying to take his position, and David is left to flee his service. As years and years go by (some scholars say 13 years) David is forced to hide out in caves, sleeping on rocks nights after night in order to save his life.
I am sure there were moments when David was asking, “What the heck God? Don’t you remember when Samuel came to anoint me? What’s going on?”
His present reality wasn’t matching the destiny God has previously spoken over him. So in the caves he stayed.
Prison: Joseph’s Story
Similar to Joseph he grew up in a family where his brothers weren’t his biggest fans. As his Dad’s favorite son, he was gifted with the coat of many colors (see picture). So naturally all of his other ELEVEN brothers grew jealous of Joseph and concluded he needed to go. In the end they decided not to kill him but instead sell him so they too would gain something out of his departure.
But why were they SO jealous to resort to these extreme measures you ask? Well previous to their evil plot to get rid of Joseph, he told him them about a dream he had where not only were they (his brothers) bowing down to him, but also the sun, moon, and stars. As you can imagine, they weren’t impressed.
Fast forward and Joseph is sold as a slave, yet is able to find favor with Potiphar, the captain of the guard, only later be falsely accused of wanting to sleep with Potiphar’s wife, and is then thrown in jail. Sitting in jail for probably what seems like an eternity, Joseph finally gets the opportunity to correctly interpret the dreams of two other prison mates, who after released fail to acknowledge his gift in order to ensure Joseph’s own dismissal. Therefore, Joseph is left to slum it out in jail for two more years.
Joseph’s present reality was not matching the dream God gave him years ago which highlighted him as a man of honor and respect. So in prison he sat.
Death: Job’s Story
Honestly, it’s hard not to read Job’s story and just get all out angry at God’s willingness to allow such tragedy in his life. He loses his livelihood, his children, his wife. Life is looking bleak and Job is left grieving the beautiful and abundant life God had originally given him. Even as I read that story, I want to shout, “What the heck God?”
His present reality didn’t match his previous experience of God’s goodness and abundance. So in mourning he remained.
Their Stories Aren’t Over & Neither is Yours!
THANKFULLY all of these stories don’t end on these low points. David goes on to be King, Joseph is used mightily through Pharaoh, and Job goes on to have peace with his circumstances and live a happy life.
Each of these moments had to be rock bottom for them, as they wondered if they could push forward and keep believing for the best any longer. And I know for so many of you, you who have experienced unimaginable circumstances.
For David, Joseph, and Job their story wasn’t over, and neither is yours.
It’s the beginning, middle, AND end of their story which makes it so unique and compelling.
So no matter how low or down you feel know that your darkest day doesn’t get the last word and it’s not the end of your story. You’ll live to fight another day, and as you battle your story becomes wildly and amazingly compelling.
And that’s a story worth living. A story worth fighting for.
Because as you sit in what feels like prison, cry in the caves, and mourn for what was yours, you don’t sit alone. He sees you. He sees the bigger picture, and knows THE BEST IS YET TO COME!
So keep fighting, keep battling, keep contending for what’s yours.
Your story isn’t over.