Saturday, August 27, 2011

Hating God

Am I allowed to say I hate God? Is that something a Christian is allowed to say? I believe it is, and it is often the reality of my soul's cry. I typically smother such thinking and expression with fearful (not Godly fear) of what people think and what God thinks. (It's sort of like the way I smother my emotions to sing "praise songs". Sometimes I really hate "praise songs"!)

I believe this stiffling and smothering of our hatred is wrong and worse than the hating of God. For the God we know, serves us. The God we know loves us indescribably. The God we know is our father, friend, confidant and advocate. He loves me even while I hate.

My hatred toward God literally poured out of me last night. I wept and wept. When I begin to cry in earnest there are waterfalls. I sat on the edge of the bed and tried not to go into "rocking and self-pity mode" while Melissa prayed for my pain.

I actively hate God every time I reject his guidance and go my own way. This past week was full of running down my own little rabit trails (don't rabits make holes though?). But God gifted me with the crash that comes after all the selfish running and independant boot-strap tugging, with a taste, just a taste, of depression.

For me depression is a big topic and one that I can't even begin to delve into here. But what depression does for me is it rips the rug out of my self-reliance. God knows how I loath this. I scramble harder and harder to get that damn rug back under my feet, but the more I struggle the deeper I go into darkness.

So last night I said into the darkness, "I hate God." It was scary. Perhaps, if my theology was better I should have said it directly with "I hate you God."

But with the words finally out, I told Melissa the laundry list of reasons that I hate God. Finally I was being honest. Not simple emotional honesty, not simple "authenticity" but expressing the reality of my hatred that I had stored up for a week or more and perhaps for a lifetime of a hatred for my maker.

Aren't we all there sometimes? If we aren't there sometimes, are we really living with God? If we're being honest, when God brings difficult things into our lives, we don't scratch our heads and say "Oh I wonder what his sovereign and good plan is in all of this." (We aren't just brains stuck on emotionless sticks. We're humans who hurt and sometimes resent and even hate.) No, I think we shake our fists and say that we hate God, even if we're too scared to verbalize it, by the lives we live and by the sin we turn to.

But here's what's so amazing about God's grace for me and for us. He knows my hatred and he still loves and accepts me. He is pleased with and rejoices over me. His greatest concern is my true well-being: my soul-being.

He knows that his circumstances can bring great pain into our lives. He knows that the choices we make bring us great pain as well. But he is the grand physician, ever loving and binding up our broken and raging hearts. This is why it's OK to admit that you hate God. God doesn't hate you. And his chest is big enough to beat on.

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