“Let’s baby wrestle! I’ll get on my knees and put one hand behind my back. You can fight normal…but don’t tell Mom.”
My poor big brother; he desperately wished I was a boy. So I agreed, on several occasions, to “baby wrestle.”
Why did I entertain this sibling wackiness?! I’m sure a therapist would say it’s some quirky way of bonding. Whatever. Reality was, I knew- even though he was stronger than me, he wouldn’t hurt me. He couldn’t, or I would tell Mom. It was my chance to “bring it” full force.
God welcomes our desire to wrestle, too. He wants us to run full force into his arms when we’re frustrated. Of course He’s stronger, but He won’t crush us. We can’t hesitate to step onto the mat; where unmet expectations lay sprawled out on the sweaty, sticky floor, and “bring it”.
Listen loves, there’s no form of battle more intimate then wrestling…
It’s grabbing hold; skin to skin, breath to breath, strength against strength.
Reaching out and seizing God – is seizing all that is good. But we’ll never know if we don’t engage in the communion.
Do you want to know God? You must be willing to honestly approach Him. Get in His face. It’s beautiful, steadfast & glorious.
Do you want to know who you are? Accept wrestling with God is part of your refining. Jacob wrestled with God, and afterwards, God gave him a new name. (Genesis 32:22-32 & Hosea 12:4) It was in the wrestling God clarified Jacob’s identity. We could be missing a defining moment if we abandon the arena of connection with our Father in Heaven.
Three reasons we walk away:
- We’re full of pride. Deep down we think, whatever God’s purposes are, it’s not valid enough for us. Therefore, we’ve no desire to hear what he has to say. We’re over it. We’re over him. We love ourselves and our plan for life more than we love God. We truly think: he’s not worth the sweat; the conversation isn’t worth our time. Simple as that.
- We’re full of misconceptions about God’s character. God’s always good. But if one smidgen of our heart suspects he’s a bit evil…we’re not going to challenge him. We know he’s stronger and suspect he’ll pin us down and punch us in the face. Maybe, we’ve misunderstood what it means to “fear God”? Maybe, we’ve confused loving discipline with punishment? But, somewhere along our journey, we’ve believed the lie, “God isn’t always good.”
- We think it’s a sin to bring our questions to God. Nowhere, I can find, is it a sin to communicate freely with God. However, it’s a matter of the heart. God sent his son, tearing down the veil separating us from direct communication with Him. He wants authentic relationship. He formed us in His image…the image that presses in and fights for intimacy. The image so consumed with the desire to be known, he’s moved space, time and history in order to touch us. Believe me: He wants to talk to you.
The majority of “faith heroes” in the Bible, in some manner, pushed back at God when they didn’t understand his plan. Two elements of their wrestling are routinely evident:
- They were humble enough to be honest. If you’re reading this thinking, I never question God in my heart, I always accept His plan without a struggle, I suspect you’re lying to God and yourself. If that was true, you’d have perfect faith. You’re not Jesus, sister. And even in His perfect faith, he asked God if he’d be willing to change His plan…three times! (Matthew 26:36-44)
- They trusted God’s goodness. They knew God’s love was permanent. Even in their unbelief, anger and sorrow-God’s plan wasn’t to walk away. Instead of pinning them down in His strength, God firmly cradled them until they understood he was not only God, but also loving Father.
If you receive anything from this read, hear this: It’s better to run to God with your frustrations, then to run from Him in frustration. Take the first step onto the mat.
I’ve put together a list of helpful Bible verses to showcase you’re not alone in your wrestling with God’s ways. FREE DOWNLOAD:God’s Word — Marked by Love
I’m writing you these truths because I’ve found myself huddled, in several seasons, in one of the “Three Reasons We Walk Away” camps listed. It’s too much to break down in a simple blog post. I have a heavy burden on my heart for you if you’re in one of these spaces right now. Please message me.