"They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor." Isaiah 61:3
"God, is this the way You treat someone who is faithful to You?" I yelled out loud on the top of the wooded hill where no one but God could hear me. "I have waited and waited and now this! I hate You, God! I have had enough!" Those were my words that day as I wrestled with news of an event that devastated me to the point where I broke down weeping.
As I sat there among the trees deciding what else I could say to God, I was speechless. I was angry. I was confused. I wondered if He even existed. If He did, I felt like He really didn't honor my faith and obedience. I sat for hours wrestling internally with my feelings.
Finally, without answers and sensing that God wasn't answering me, I turned to leave. I had been sitting on an old oak tree that was broken at the base. The tree pointed toward the base of another huge oak tree. Finally, a still quiet voice inside said, "Today, like this broken oak tree you are sitting on, you are a broken man. But this brokenness was needed in order for you to become this large oak tree you see."
Months and even years had passed with many struggles. But God was true to His word from that day. He began to replace the pain and disappointment with an inner joy that only His grace could provide.
Have you ever wrestled with the events of life, feeling that God has deserted you? Have you been honest with God? He is the kind of Father who is willing to have those difficult conversations. He won't always change things, but His purposes will be accomplished and peace will come if you trust. Trust Him this day with those things that are most difficult.