The Kindness of God Leads
“Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?” Romans 2:4
Have you ever had those moments when you thought things were going so well, and then suddenly you get hit by someone or something that steals it all away? You wonder how can it be that you could lose your joy and peace so quickly. Yet here you are, once again letting your emotions take you down this dark road. Enter Satan, who according to John 10:10 is described as, “the thief who comes to steal, kill and destroy,” and you are at the top of his hit list.
The kindness of God leads us to repentance, but the thing that Satan does not want us to do is to repent. You would think as knowing God, that it would be the automatic thing we would do. However, when we find ourselves on that dark road, when we have lost the light of who He is, we will find ourselves trapped in the snare of the enemy. Satan can keep us from repenting if he can get us to play the blame game that goes back to Adam and Eve in Genesis 3:11-13. We will look at who is to blame and as long as there’s someone else, we don’t have to do anything.
Satan will use shame to cause us to be ashamed of our actions and how we respond to people. Then there comes a cover up where we lie or do anything to justify. We cycle on down further in the lies of the enemy and the fear of rejection and failure come crashing in, and it lowers our self worth. It lowers the ability for us to see that God made us in His image, and that He delights in us. We think God is mad at us, and how can He possibly forgive us, especially when we keep going around and around the same mountain.
In I Kings 19 we read about Elijah and his dark road moment. Elijah let fear come in and he ran for his life. In I Kings 19:4, “He came to a broom tree, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough LORD,” he said. “Take my life.” Elijah fell into the sleep of depression, but God sent angels to feed and take care of him. How many of us have fallen into that same sleep?
When we read further in 1 Kings 19 we find the Lord appears to Elijah, “Then a great and powerful wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.” “What are you doing here, Elijah?” God speaks those same words to us. When you find yourself in those moments that seem so dark, and you think you cannot possibly find your way back listen for God’s still small voice that will speak to you in His Word. “I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with loving-kindness I have drawn you” Jeremiah 31:3.
God’s loving kindness brings us out of the mess we make, and the fears and failures we have. When we think God is mad at us, it could not be further from the truth. If you played baseball with God it would not be a three strikes and your out kind of game. He would be cheering you on to stay in the batters box! You can strike out as many times as you want, but stay in the batters box! Don’t leave the game! I know you messed up, and I know you have failed and have been rejected, but I need you to stay in the game! Why God? “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 ~ Cheryl
Your Turn: Have you found yourself asleep or in a dark place, needing to be awakened or have His glorious light warm your face? Or can you think of a time that God delivered you out of that slumber or darkness? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below. ~ Breath on Paper