November 18, 2019

Why Not Me?

Devotion for the Week...

There is a woman in our church whose son had spina bifida. Shortly after we moved here, I heard her talking about when he was a baby and she was having a "why me?" moment. She said that the "why me?" was quickly followed by the thought, "why not me?" After all, she said, she had strong family support around her, to help with caring for him. Thanks to that family support, they were able to make it so her son could do things that might have seemed impossible to others, like hunting in the woods with his father and grandfather, despite being in a wheelchair. Her "why not me?" has always stayed with me because it recognizes that hard things are going to come to us all.

We desperately want the hard things in life to happen to other people, while we experience nothing but the good and easy things. That's not the way it happens, though. There is no trouble free life track. None of us are immune and we shouldn't be surprised when the hard things come at us.

Being a good person isn't insurance against trouble in life. Neither is being a Christian. In fact, the Bible shows us plenty of examples of people who were good and still suffered, people who believed in Jesus and served Him to the best of their ability and still suffered.

Think of Joseph, who was a slave in Potiphar's house, in charge of everything Potiphar owned. He refused to sleep with Potiphar's wife, leaving the house so fast "he left his cloak in her hand as he ran from the house" (Genesis 39:12). Realizing she couldn't have him, she screamed and told the servants that he tried to rape her and then ran when she screamed. This landed Joseph in jail, where he languished for years, even though he had done nothing wrong.

Then there's Paul, who traveled around teaching people about Jesus and starting churches. Locals often didn't like his teachings, whether because they were Jews who didn't want him teaching about Jesus or because their own livelihoods were threatened since people who worship Jesus wouldn't be worship the local goddess (as was the case in Ephesus). Riots happened at times because people got so stirred up in opposition to Paul's teaching. Then, when Paul returned to Jerusalem, another riot broke out, which resulted in him being taken to prison while the commander of the Roman regiment tried to figure out what was going on (beginning in Acts 21). To make a long story short, Paul spent the rest of his years in prison. Like Joseph, though, Paul had done nothing wrong!

It would likely have been easy for Joseph and Paul to wallow in self-pity, crying, "why me," but I get the feeling that they were more inclined to think, "why not me?" They chose to continue to serve God in whatever circumstances they found themselves, just as the mom in my church chose to work to give her son the best she could despite the health challenges they faced.
Jesus has overcome every trouble we will face | DevotedQuilter.com
Background quilt is Pinwheel Garden
Jesus told us, "Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Hard things will come, no matter how much we wish to avoid them, because they are simply part of life. We have the choice, though, to cling to an attitude of self-pity and "why me?" or to recognize and accept that trouble will come. When it does, we also have the assurance that Jesus has overcome every trouble we may face. We have His support through it all and nothing is stronger than that.

4 comments:

  1. This is something I really needed to read today, thank you.

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  2. Thank you for your Sunday messages.

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  3. If you have faith, you definitely have the strength to say "why not me". Jesus already had the answer before you had the question. Wonderful message today. Thank you.

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  4. Another way of looking at it is that, as Christians, we know where our source of strength is - so why NOT me? Our testimony will be so much more powerful because of the victories we experience. (I know that there are lots of situations where we aren't victorious in the the way that the world looks at victory, but our perseverance becomes our testimony!)

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