daily devotional

Well dang if sometimes it doesn’t feel like God is just against you! What you want you do not have, and what you have is not what you wanted. It’s as if good things elude you and are continually within sight, yet out of reach. I know you’ve been asking why. I know you’re wondering why you are being denied of the things you want. Well, let’s talk about it!

Psalm 84:11 “The Lord will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.”

Hmmmm, okay, so clearly I’m not doing something right. If God rewards those who do what is right with ALL good things, and I’m missing a few key good things, then I’m doing something wrong. Maybe. Maybe there are things you need to work on to be in alignment with God’s goodness. Absolutely, that’s a valuable thing to consider.

But instead of getting stuck in this perpetual game of questioning if anything you do is ever right, just remember making your will to seek his will is enough. When your plans are to follow his plans, even when you fail along the way, he honors your faithfulness.

If you’re seeking, then he’s revealing. If you’re following, then he’s leading. If you’re asking, then he is answering. If you’re truly trying to do what is right, then he is making it right. Yes, he’s that powerful, so you can stop the never ending questioning of yourself. Are your intentions pure? Are you truly seeking God’s will? Are you submitted to his plans? Great … then you qualify!

Even though you may not always do it right, you are seeking to do what IS right, therefore you qualify for God’s blessing of withholding no good thing from you. That’s freaking awesome … but in reality when you look around, it sure feels like God is holding out on you, doesn’t it?

Why haven’t you gotten that promotion? The promotion is good.
Why was the door closed? It was a dang good door.
Why did this not work out? It seemed like it should have worked.
Why hasn’t this relationship been restored?
Why hasn’t this changed?
Why were you not chosen?
Why don’t you have it yet?
Why is God withholding this goodness from you?

Maybe it’s not happening for you, not because you’re not good enough or because it in itself isn’t good, but simply because it isn’t good for you. If God is withholding this good thing from you as you’re faithfully seeking his best plan for your life, then maybe this good thing isn’t good enough right now. Maybe this good thing would cause you to miss God’s greater plans for you. Maybe this good thing would bring temporary satisfaction but cause future disappointment, and God in all of his wisdom knows that future disappointment would derail you from your divine destiny. So, temporary satisfaction is denied for your greater good, and you don’t get what you want.

But, you don’t know that right now. You can’t see how the withholding of this thing you want is for your ultimate benefit. But, can you trust it? Can you trust if your good good Father is withholding anything from you, it is because it’s not what is best for you. Can you bring your broken heart, your disappointed soul, your confused thoughts, and your disrupted plans to the Almighty and once again seek what he may be doing here that you don’t currently understand?

Our dog Tank is 130 pounds of sheer joy. This dog wakes up happy to be alive every day, always ready for the next great adventure. He’s my idea of perfection. It’s taken 6 years to get him to this place of obedience, but we’re finally here. And it’s good. So good, until there is a ball. When a ball is present, this dog loses his mind. He goes completely berserk. Jumping and spinning, crazed with his fixated attention on the ball. Suddenly, our well-manner, loving dog is a total spaz stopping at nothing to get the ball. He won’t eat, he won’t sleep, and he certainly won’t listen when there’s a ball bouncing around.

Sometimes we take the ball away. Not because he’s a bad dog and not because the ball is bad, but because that ball does not bring out the best in him. Yes, we withhold what he wants because what he wants is keeping him from everything else in life.

Maybe what you want is being withheld because it would keep you from everything else God has for you. Maybe you would become fixated on having this thing and it would cause you to act a little crazy. Girl, crazy doesn’t look good on you, so God in all of his infinite wisdom says ‘nope, no ball.’

Last night, my husband was telling me how very close we were to being billionaires. We are not billionaires, Not even close. But apparently there was a time when one decision kept us from being there today. Looking back, my husband questions his decision. Ahhhhh, why didn’t he do it? How did he miss this? Think of all the good we could have done with that fortune.

But, I must believe God stepped in and protected us in those decisions. He protected us from billions of dollars. Not because money is bad, but because at that time, it would have been bad for us. We would have missed all the years of learning God was truly a provider as we depended on him for our next dollar. We would have missed learning how to do all these things because we were forced to do them ourselves. We may have been richer, but would we have been grounded? Would we have been humble? Would we have been generous? Would we have been faithful? Our good good Father knows what’s most important, and he knows what goodness we can handle with grace, and the rest he lovingly holds back so we don’t miss the destiny he has for us.

God withholds no good thing from those who do what is right. It’s absolutely true. But God sees the future of things, and therefore some of the things we currently see as good are withheld because they’re not for our ultimate good. Can we be okay with that? Can we make peace with not always understanding, but always trusting God is working for us, not against us?

Can we even be so bold as to pray a prayer of 100% faith and thank him for not giving you what you wanted when you wanted it? Can you praise him for taking the dang ball away because you don’t want to be that crazy girl? Can you trust that his plans are good and you will receive every bit of goodness when it is best and when you’re ready?

I would love nothing more than to give my dog Tank thousands of bouncy balls … but he’s not ready. Maybe we’re not ready either.

It brings God pleasure to give us good things, but he’s in no rush to screw anything up in the process. When the time is right, he will open up the storehouses of Heaven and you will receive his abundant goodness! But right now, maybe you just couldn’t handle it. God eagerly awaits the day when you’re strong enough, mature enough, grounded enough, disciplined enough to receive it all!