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Something is frustrating you today. Something’s not going well. Where is Jesus in this? Is he your partner walking beside you? Or is he one step ahead of you, leading the way? Or is he behind you, cleaning up the mess?
In the trials we face, we need Jesus to be all of the above. But too easily we prefer that he’d be our follower, doing our bidding, guided by us as we deal with difficulties the way we think is best for us.
Our biggest mistake, I’ve noticed, is interpreting frustrations and disappointments as warning flags that Jesus is letting us down, ignoring us and disregarding our prayers. We feel abandoned by him, so we abandon him at the very moment when he is trying to bless us with new growth, new discoveries, and new holiness.
Frustrations aren’t bad. Frustrations are merely signs that change is required: change that moves us closer to Christ. It might be within, bringing peace in the midst of turmoil, it might be a change of direction or an unexplored solution to a problem. Always, though, frustrations are an invitation to trust Jesus more strongly.
Because we can. Because he understands what’s good for us far better than we do.