Poetry On Odyssey: Sometimes, I Need More

Poetry On Odyssey: Sometimes, I Need More

My Father hears me. He restores me.
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Sometimes I need more.

When the attacks are constant.

Simply because I am in position.

I'm in this race.

Of course, I continue to pray.

I add fasting.

I go-to my sacred place.

Because I am obedient,

My Father hears me.

He restores me:

mercy, favor and grace.

I am thankful.

I too need prayer

Sometimes I need him more.

* * *

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12 Bible Verses For Faith In Hard Times

Remind yourself that God is always with you.
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Lately, I have felt lost at what God wants for my life. Ever since I've come back to UWG everything has been horrible. It seems that I can't catch a break. I'm trying my best to focus on school, work, and extracurricular activities. But it's hard when I'm having issues with my apartment/roommates and knowing my family back home is struggling and needs many prayers. All, I keep thinking is maybe Carrollton isn't where I belong anymore. I've asked God if He can guide me in the right direction. Below, I have found Bible verses that have helped get me through these rough, past couple of weeks.

1. Isaiah 43:2

"When you go through deep waters, I will be with you."

2. Psalm 37:5

"Commit your way to the Lord. Trust in Him, and He will act."

3. Romans 8:18

"The pain that you've been feeling, can't compare to the joy that's coming."

4. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed in strength, and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future."

5. Joshua 1:9

"Be bold. Be brave. Be courageous."

6. Ecclesiastes 3:1

"There is a time for everything and a reason for every activity under the heavens."

7. Isaiah 41:10

"Don't be afraid, for I am with you. Don't be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand."

8. Isaiah 66:9

"I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born, says the Lord."

9. Psalm 91:4

"He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings, you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart."

10. Psalm 62:1-2

"My soul finds rest in God alone, my salvation comes from Him, He alone is my rock and my salvation."

11. Philippians 4:13

"I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength."

12. Jeremiah 29:11

"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

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I'll ask God why he lets bad things happen every day until I run out of the air to breathe

A question everybody ask, but no one seems to know the answer to.

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If you've ever sat down long enough to brood over all that's wrong with the world, you've probably asked yourself why God allows bad things to happen to you at least a dozen times. I ask myself this question almost daily… and I am a Christian.

Don't get me wrong, I truly believe in God... but it's hard to stay focused on God's goodness when bad things start happening. Around age 12, "bad things" (like depression) started distracting me from God's goodness. Below is a story that honestly tore my ideas of God apart. To this day, I still can't believe it happened.

One day after school, I was in the kitchen, looking for a snack. At the time, I was trying to feed my feelings with food which, as I now know, only makes you fatter (food does not fix feelings). On this particular day, I didn't find a snack. Instead, I found myself looking at a chef's knife and subconsciously contemplating the pros and cons of self-harm. I picked up the knife, twirled it in my hand, and tried to guess how much cutting myself open with the knife would hurt. Would the knife's jab be a welcomed pain or would it feel like a white-hot lightning flash tearing into my skin? My fear of pain interrupted my debate and forced me to run back to my room. I cried, hard and quietly into my mountain of pillows and blankets because what else was I supposed to do? That night, I asked God to take away my wayward feelings, because I couldn't handle them anymore. He didn't. I woke up the next morning and felt exactly the same.

My figurative run-in with a chef's knife temporarily wounded my trust in God. And I know I am not the only person to have had this wound producing experience.

In life, a lot of bad things happen, and I am almost positive there has been some personal experience, be it the untimely death of your mother, the inappropriate touch of another human being or, another unfortunate situation, that has caused you to question (or totally give up on) God.

As I said before, I frequently asked, and still ask, myself why God lets bad things happen to mostly innocent people and it wasn't until I started college that I began to really look for answers.

Through Bible study, and a LOT of conversations with trusted adults and friends, I've come to understand that God, as crazy as it sounds, welcomes humanity to question his goodness. He even talks, in great detail, about why he lets bad things happen to good people through Bible stories like Job.

This isn't a research paper, so I'll spare you the details of what I found and get straight to the point(s):

God, through biblical texts, makes it clear that there are reasons why he allows bad things to happen to good people. Some of these defensives for God's divinity and goodness (called a theodicy) are very straightforward, while other theodicies are more puzzling.

The theodicy that makes the most sense to me, and is easiest to explain, centers around humanity's gift of free will. Scientifically speaking, people are the only species to have complete control of their actions. In the Bible, humanity's ability to control their actions is called free will. When God created humanity, he gifted them with free will because he did not want to force humanity to love him. God's allowance for free will makes his role in Hitler-esque situations complex. Should God take back his gift of free will? Should he intervene? While I do not know the answer to the questions I posed, It is clear that humanities abuse of free will does cause bad things to happen; not God.

Besides the aforementioned theodicy, there is one other theodicy (that I am aware of) arguing that God allows bad things to happen because hardship, like depression in my case, builds character. My experiences with poor mental health, although difficult to manage at times, has helped me appreciate life a little bit more. Had it not been for the valley's of depression I've fallen into, I do not know if I would have ever appreciated the peaks of joy I've stood on.

In conclusion, I would like to make it clear that I am still trying to understand why God would allow bad things to happen to good people. Yes, I have found several theodicies that support God's allowance of bad things and yes, I still believe God is good and real. But, there is no denying the fact that I still don't completely understand why God allows for so many bad things to happen… and that's okay. In the Bible, people like Moses, David, Job, and Naomi all asked God why he let bad things happen to them and their people. If there is one thing I did learn while searching the bible for answers to the question "why God lets bad things happen to good people," it's this: those who are closest to God have the most questions for him.

When we question God, we allow ourselves to wade a little further into the deeper-end of God's true nature. Maybe he just wants us to spend some time getting to know him? I am still, honestly, not sure.

And that, my friends, is okay. I'll ask God why he lets bad things happen every day until I run out of the air to breathe.

#stayencouraged

Cover Image Credit:

Amari Gilmore

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