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November 5, 2021 8:00 am
You will will must always be the engine.
Emotions must always be Dr. Tony Evans says there's danger when we let the feelings we can control guidance couples is pulling the train journey is celebrating faithfulness. This is the alternative Dr. Tony Evans, author, speaker, senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas Texas and president of the urban alternative. There comes a time in each of our lives when God somehow disappoints us how should we respond when it feels as though that's happened. Dr. Evans explores this today as he takes an intimate look at how to cope with loss.
What's join him. Wonder how many people have had to wrestle with God. How many have been disappointed by God. God is in your sense. Let you down. He didn't come through for you. Probably something you would readily say out loud that God is disappointed you got is let you down the come through like you hoped he would believe you would thought he would. What you're not alone. Bible has stories in it of people who didn't feel like God knew what he was doing, who felt let down by the deity who felt abandoned who felt confused.
He felt God wasn't there when they needed him.
Particularly if it's something major something that's not just a run-of-the-mill, but something that was so terribly significant. You felt God was just not there for you.
Of course this is the question of Job he wanted to know why do the righteous suffer didn't understand even his friends couldn't help them out trying to figure out why he was suffering the trooper be told me and God have been wrestling with God have been wrestling with why he took sister Evans at this particular point when there was so much prayer so much expectation so many signals of healing and things went in the other direction. So the reality is most if not all have those times in our lives with. We struggle with God. When the statement that his ways are not always in his thoughts about thoughts becomes very real in your situation because in light of what happening sure wasn't thinking what you think his ways. Sure one of the ways that you have planned things to work out.
So these are real questions.
One biblical writer.
One biblical author who raised this question that I have mentioned from time to time. Is the prophet Habakkuk Habakkuk gives us some of his sentiments inverse to the first chapter when he says how long the Lord what I call for help and you will not hear.
I cry out to you violence. Yet you do not see anybody feeling the this question is how long do I have to pray about this. Talk to you about this pleased with you about this and have an assignment is a question in verse two, he says why not question why why I asked that question today. Actually, not only did so why did you take Stebbins, but why am one of the exams whether discovered earlier so it could be addressed early that was a while to chapter 3 verse 16 he says I heard in my inward parts trembled at the sound. My lips quivered the K entered my bones in my place. I tremble because I must wait quietly for the day of distress for the people to rise, who will invade us to make that Shorty says I'm unraveling, I tremble at the Outlook of what I see, here's a man, a prophet of God who is hurting deeply. Now the backdrop of this book is God is bringing judgment on his people for their idolatry and their rebellion against him and he's going to use the Babylonians to bring the judgment back of the prophet is struggling with number one. The fact of judgment and number two people use people worse than the Israelites to do the judging and he can't figure out God's thinking can't figure out God's perspective makes a statement that we've all heard it was said in chapter 3 verse 20 but the Lord is in his holy temple. Let all the earth be silent before him.
So I backup is struggling with the why question how long question not being able to figure it out and all he can do is be psyched, not in the secular world they would offer us a number of suggestions about facing this kind of situation when the world doesn't make sense somewhat encourage us to resignation that is well I just have to accept it because there's nothing I can do about my despair, so they resign themselves. What will be will be. That's just how it another approach to dealing with despair and disappointment is detachment.
I want to think about it. I don't want to deal with it so I'm going to find something to distract me from so that I don't have to think about the problem with detachment is your despair knows how to work around it knows how to sleep in. When those gaps come together to keep finding more escape to detaching from the pain of the problem on the difficulty so some people resign. Others detach every team in the bravado he didn't want to say well hold your chin up you will be this so there are many ways that people seek to meet their despair when the questions are how long and why is he says I tremble in my despair. I want to offer you through the prophet Rebecca. Another approach when God does not make sense. Rebecca helps me out helps us out in verses 17 to 19 of chapter 3. Though the fig tree should not blossom and there be no fruit on the vine's though the yield of the olive should fail, and the fields produce no food, though the flock should be cut off from the fold, and there be no cattle in the stall all that week says go though this is the reality yet her safety. I will exalt in the Lord.
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
The Lord God is my strength and he has made my feet like Hines feet and makes me walk on my high places.
Let's spend a few moments he I want to center for a moment or two words. The situation is bleak. His circumstances are out of his control because most of these problems are tied. In fact, there is no rain, and he can make a right is out of his control. You can't do anything more to make it in our situation that was nothing we were not willing to do nothing that was within our control. We didn't try to situation, but many others. Two words for important words. He says I will he says I will but what he decides to do goes against how he feels we been already told how he feels he's got all these questions and he says in 16 he's in distress. So we know what his emotions are doing. They have hit rock bottom. But he makes a choice says I will sometimes faith and feelings get along sometimes you feel faithless faith in faith and feeling to become partners there working together, but sometimes they get divorced. Your will, must always be the engine.
Your emotions must always be the caboose, the moment the caboose is pulling the train. Your journey is in trouble and that is because you can't always control how you feel feelings change all the time based on influences impact circumstances, situations, happy, sad, glad, mad, frustrated, irritated exacerbating of feelings all over the place you crying one minute you're laughing the mix. So how do we handle those feelings to just ignore them.
Dr. Evans will have the answer for us when he continues, just a moment but first I want to tell you about a powerful new book that goes hand-in-hand with the messages we been sharing these past few days is called divine disruption holding onto faith when life breaks your heart before her passing.
Lois Evans had urged her family to work together on a collaborative project in this brand-new book, focusing on how they process their own grief and loss is the product of her wish and divine disruption. Dr. Evans and his four adult children, Krista Levens hurst, Priscilla Scheier, Anthony Evans and Jonathan Evans candidly shared honest questions they've asked raw emotions. They felt and solutions they learned through the tumultuous experience of losing eight left ones in less than two years time through their shared experiences and individual viewpoints will discover your own path to persevere in difficult times, and ultimately to experience God's peace through it all we like to send you your own copy of divine disruption as a thank you gift when you make a contribution to help us keep Tony's teaching on the station along with it will send you CDs for access to digital downloads of all seven parts of our current living with law series, including today's message as well as a touching roundtable conversation with the Evans family about grief again.
Both these resources are yours with our thanks when you make a donation email@example.com or call our resource Center, day or night at 1-800-800-3222 that's 1-800-800-3222 with Dr. Evans will come back with more of our message right after this one lighting since collection is 1% special about not seeing family, not the streets of Jerusalem and several other local County travel team in his brand-new film journey with Jesus.
Dr. Evans and the Evans family explore the story of Jesus Christ cinematically found Dr. Evans will take you to the places where Jesus top hung out with his friends and ultimately sacrificed his life for you. Don't miss journey with Jesus. This feature-length film is coming to select theaters in November to visit Tony Evans network.
To learn more and find out where it will be selling. You can never ignore the reality of emotions. Emotions how you feel you emotions and never to be dismissed like me don't exist or that they don't matter, but what he did was say I will. I'm going to make a decision. In spite of my distress and despair. In spite of unanswered questions about how long unanswered questions why I'm going to make a decision, I will exalt the Lord. I will rejoice in the God of my selfish.
I will I have made a choice as we would say a more contemporary language to pray for many, not to praise him for what I'm been feeling to praise him in the midst of what I'm feeling. I will place I will exalt in the Lord, the God of my salvation. Since I will rejoice when you read the Psalms you see this regularly. David praising God while in the midst of describing pain to describing pain so important to you know you looking at all the negatives he says but I will yet praise how we appraise. He makes a decision. I will rejoice and celebrate the God of my salvation.
What is the result of this celebration, because with the celebration. What is now comes a change of focus.
I'm going to focus on the God of my salvation didn't change his problem. But he changed his perspective in the midst of this problem. Verse 19 the Lord God is my strength when you are in despair by the nature of its impact on you. You are weak either physically weak or emotionally weak, psychologically weak, circumstantially week this week. He says, but the Lord has given him strength strength didn't come because the circumstance change. Strength came because God entered into his equation in your despair. Don't fall into the trap of drawing from him rather than drawing to and then he goes further. He's given me strength for safety and he has made my feet like Hines feet and makes me walk: complexes the picture here is of a mountain goat or Mountain Dew. He's talking about high places, mountains, the beauty of a mountain goat or a Mountain Dew.
You is surefooted.
Mix while they, they have the unique ability because of the strength of their legs to climb the mountain without falling into potholes or pits that are able to navigate the terrain of the amount that I know we would all prefer to read any makes my high places disappear. I would preferred that that my high places disappeared, but what God did was strengthen my legs. He didn't cancel the mountain. He changed the footwork, both by strengthening me and showing me how to navigate the terrain he has changed. My footwork and maybe ask me walk on high places. He gives me the ability to climb this mountain and the navigate sounds a lot like the end of Isaiah 40 they that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength they shall mount up with wings like eagles run a growing walk, and I think they will, they will be able to keep going when in your own humanity you want to quit. I would love I would love to be able to say that when we follow God the mountains. This sometimes they do sometimes they do, but there are those times when they don't. You have to learn to become a spiritual milk have to ask God for strength when he got the strength in his rejoicing right now and I know it's early one for me to start my day asking the Lord for strength for today and to say even sometimes with tears rolling down. I'm going to praise you. Questions why have questions we all have "why" questions if you haven't had one keep living the bill "why" questions and you praise God he can get an answer because many times he does give answers but ditto sometimes he doesn't explain himself. So if I were to entitle this time with you I would simply call it trusting God in the dark trusting God when this great lack of clarity when he has not made himself inextricably clear.
You have to wonder what he's doing why he's doing it, why is he doing it now, why is he doing it in this way, why does it hurt so bad wanted this law. Praise God for those times when he gives you a clear answer, but according to Rebecca, praising and giving Dr. Tony up during biblical truth and personal experience in a message called how to cope with loss and back in just a moment with a final thought, but first I want to let you know that the full-length version of today's message is available as a part of the current seven part series living with loss.
Remember it yours with our thanks, along with the divine disruption book. I told you about earlier when you make a contribution to keep this listener supported ministry coming your way. Just visit firstname.lastname@example.org you can make a donation request, the living with loss package and instantly download the messages from the series again that's email@example.com or give us a call anytime of the day or night at 1-800-800-3222 where one of our helpful team members is ready to assist with your request. Again, that's 1-800-800-3222 well on Monday. The Evans family gathers together in one place to discuss the thoughts and struggles. They each went through as they remember their mother while putting together the divine disruption book right now though Tony's back with his final thought for today make you praise a way of life so that when you get in this situation you have to start from scratch, start the beginning because you you beginning your day just worshiping and surrendering to praising, but it's also what we need one another sometime you need somebody to help you break it to say coming out and coming out so we can encourage one another, God help us move forward trusting God. Like doing the alternative with Dr. Tony Irvin alternate celebrating 40 years of faithfulness, thanks to the generous contribution