If we’re honest, some of us can admit that our lives haven’t played out the way we thought they would or should. A million and one less-than-stellar things have happened to us or because of us, but more than that, sometimes it feels as though life has some sort of sick vendetta against us. Dreams fail or good things remain absent, and really, it can be easy to accept that this is just the way life is; some sort of beaten exercise in crestfallen adventures and broken values.
What’s worse is that if we’re a Christian who puts their faith and trust in God, it can be entirely too easy to blame God for the lack of good in our life. Because we walk in Him and aim to follow His ways, it’s convenient to wonder why more beautiful things don’t happen to us; especially if He really loves and cares for us the way the Bible says. After all, aren’t we the chosen ones who are supposed to be blessed and taken care of because of our place in His family? Thoughts like these can become far too prevalent when we’re facing a situation(s) that are lacking in goodness and grace.
The truth is that a majority of the bad or less-than-good things that befall us have nothing to do with God. But rather, they are the result of the choices we make and the decisions we bring upon ourselves. Does God have complete control of what does and does not happen in our lives? Absolutely, the story of Job teaches us as much. But the choices we make lead to the situations we find ourselves in, and often times, God allows the results of our decisions to stand as truth.
When we choose a path to take in life, that decision carries consequences and results, leading to more situations and more choices. Really, life is little more than a series of decisions to make and choices to weigh. But when that series leads to us facing seemingly insurmountable odds, the humanistic, sin-based part of us can begin to wonder why God hates us so much that He would let so many bad things happen to us.
It’s this self-centered frame of mind that can lead to us separating ourselves from God and His ways.
The truth is—and will always remain—that God is incapable of hating us. We are His creations and the Children whom He cares for so deeply. He may hate the sins we commit and He may hate the things and situations we cause to happen, but He doesn’t hate us. Conversely, He adores us and wants nothing more than to be closer with us, but He understands that without gifting us free will, He wouldn’t be the benevolent God He is. Instead, He would be a dictator moving chess pieces around on the world’s board, doing with us as He pleased, when He pleased.
But God gives us the will and freedom to make our own choices, even when those choices don’t line up with the plans He has for our lives. That understanding of mercy is nearly impossible to fathom. Only our God could grasp such a perfectly intricate blending of His will and our freedom. It’s staggering, really.
So no, God doesn’t hate us and no, He doesn’t keep good things from happening to us to teach us a lesson. He simply allows us to take responsibility for the choices we make and sometimes those responsibilities are a burden to bear. Does He still protect us and hope we learn from the choices we make? Yes, He does, and He does it in kindness and in grace, often times including the smallest, sweetest of blessing even in the midst of our disobedience or struggles.
As His children, it is our responsibility to do our absolute best to seek after His will and plan for our life. Then, we are able to understand the steps and paths we should take throughout our days so that we are fulfilling the plans He has for our life. It’s on that path that we reach our ultimate happiness and satisfaction. We only have to trust Him to get us there.
Our God has no hate in His heart, least of all for us. He has nothing but love to share. And though life can lead us to believe otherwise on occasion, the bad things coming at us one after another aren’t there to punish us; they’re there to teach us and to mold us. It’s up to us to handle them with the respect and maturity our walk in Him requires.