Why does God allow our struggle? Why does he watch from above, knowing we’re about to face a problem, and not unleash his power to prevent it?
The struggle you’re in right now could have been avoided. The problem you’re dealing with today could have been solved before it ever got to your doorstep. You could be blissfully unaware of every hardship that was ever headed your way, because God COULD have blocked it all. But he didn’t. Why not?
Why wouldn’t he use his power to make everything peaceful in your life? Why wouldn’t he block what has caused you pain? Why wouldn’t he clear every obstacle so you could just move forward with ease?
If he can, then why doesn’t he?
If you’re new to this faith thing, or if you’re smack dab in the middle of a mess you wish you could have been spared from, you might be wondering why God withholds his power and chooses not to stop struggle and allows life to hit so hard sometimes. It’s a fair question. In fact, it may even be a question that has held you back from a fully surrendered life to God, because deep down you don’t trust his goodness to be good for you.
Think about this … while God sits above with a higher perspective on everything we encounter, he not only sees what has been and what is, he sees what will be. He knows how this story ends. He knows of the victory before the battle even begins. He knows of the breakthrough before the breakdown. He knows of the healing before the first hurt. He knows of the growth before the pruning. He knows of the future beauty before the ashes.
But he sees much more than that. He not only sees the realm of time from beginning to end, but he sees what is within. He knows exactly what he put inside of you. And God, in all of his wisdom, knows what is inside of you must be under pressure to come out.
A diamond is simply a piece of coal that has been made good under pressure. Who did that? That was God. God’s design decided the same carbon that would form the dull and black coal, would create valuable clear jewels within the earth’s mantle under extreme pressure and heat. Same material, different environment, over millions of years.
So what could he be doing with you and the pressure you’re under? Oh girl, he could be revealing what he designed you for! He could be making you more valuable than you ever imagined. He could be using all he put within you to totally transform your life.
But you want it without the pressure, don’t you? You would prefer to skip the problems and avoid the struggle. No heat, please! And time … can we skip that process? We all would prefer things to be easier and faster. That’s our human desire. However, God’s desire is higher and greater than our own, and he’s willing to allow his girls to face the darkness to receive the clarity of the diamond.
Perhaps you’ve seen the image going around social media that shows the shadow of a giant up against a tiny warrior with a sling shot. It says “If God puts a Goliath in front of you, He must believe there’s a David inside of you.”
Ohhhh, I like it! Tapping into the warrior that’s inside while staring down impossible obstacles that overwhelm us. It’s the true bible story of David and Goliath, of course. David was just the shepherd boy showing up to the battle lines to deliver lunch for his brothers. And there he encounters the enemy’s giant named Goliath, standing over 9 feet tall. An enemy who had held his people hostage in fear. An enemy who kept them from moving forward in the battle. And little David boldly steps up and says “your servant will go and fight him.”
1 Samuel 17 tells us the entire story. David slays Goliath with nothing more than a stone and a slingshot, and the Israelites were victorious and free to move forward.
What a great story … but why would a loving God allow Goliath to stand in the way in the first place? Why would he allow this threat? Why would he position him as a problem for David to have to face?
Isn’t that the question you’re asking in your life? Lord, why would you even allow this problem? What is the point of this struggle? Why this hardship here? Why wouldn’t you just clear the way for me to easily move forward? If you love me, why won’t you make this easier for me?
Oh, because you have to experience this to understand God’s love on a whole new level. Ephesians 3:18 “May you have the power to understand … how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.”
How you understand the overwhelming enormity of God’s love for you is to see it in action. To see his power unleashed within you. To see him strengthen you to overcome. To see him give you victory when defeat was almost certain. To see his light where there was once only darkness. You simply don’t understand that God is always for you without the battle to proceed. You don’t understand the power of victory without the threat of defeat. And you simply don’t have a clue what’s inside of you until you face the giant in front of you.
God designed the diamond to come from the same carbon of coal under pressure. He designed David to turn from a shepherd boy to a warrior from the pressure of Goliath. And he designed your life to become so much more under the pressures you face today.
This isn’t to punish you. This isn’t to stop you. This isn’t to overwhelm and defeat you. This is to reveal what God has put within you and help you become exactly who he created you to be.
And don’t forget, my sister, that we face a true enemy in this world. An enemy who targets you with the intentions to kill, steal, and destroy. Some of the Goliaths you face are a result of his attacks. But God knows what he has put within you will make you more than a conqueror!
In the end, the enemy’s attacks will be turned on him, and all that was intended to harm you will be used for good! You will walk away knowing exactly how wide, how long, how high, and how deep God’s love is for you, and you will know without a doubt of his power working within you.
It’s not the way we would have designed all of this, but God truly does know better than us. He gives us diamonds from pressure, and he gives us victory in battle. He gives us strength from within when there’s problems all around. This is how he proves his love and his power.