I paced throughout the house during the early morning praying, begging, seeking and looking for an answer. Someone precious to me was seriously ill and I didn’t understand. Have you ever questioned why would God would do this awful thing? There is a gnawing pain you feel because you have trusted God, but now you wonder if He really is trustworthy?
If you have not gone through a season of feeling that God won’t answer you, or doesn’t hear you, or has removed Himself from you, believe me, sometime in your life you will. This season is a difficult one as you navigate through intense pain from your situation and also feel isolated from God. This particular day that I was struggling trusting God, He led me to a scripture. The scripture was in Hebrews 4:15-16, “For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things just as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let’s approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace for help at the time of our need.” Reading this scripture focused me on several things. The Greek word for “sympathize” is defined as having a fellow feeling or compassion. Yeshua as our high priest sympathizes with us and has compassion for our predicament because He has experienced similar experiences. In Luke 19:41, Yeshua weeps over Jerusalem because He knows what the future holds for the city and how, if they had not rebelled in their hearts against God, they would not have had to pay the price for their rebellion. In John 11:35, Yeshua wept for his friend Lazarus. He grieved for his friend who had died and had been in the tomb for four days. Yeshua is no different than us in that He experienced the pain Lazarus’ family felt as they grieved. He loved Lazarus and felt sympathy and compassion for his family.
The next thing that captured my attention was in Hebrews 4:16, “let’s approach the throne of grace with confidence”. The Greek word for “confidence” is defined as a freedom of speech, openness, especially in speech and boldness. So, when we are experiencing these events in our lives, it’s time for us to run to Yeshua, our high priest, and tell Him every burden that is weighing us down. It’s not the time to say rehearsed trite sayings that we think are appropriate so God won’t get mad at us, because we’re upset with Him. This is your time to tell Him your fears, your requests, your doubts, everything that isn’t pretty. By doing this, you lay everything at Yeshua’s feet. The burden is laid upon Him and believe me, He can carry it! In v. 16 there is a promise that is given to us, “that we may receive mercy and find grace for help at the time of our need”. Notice that the promise is not that God will fulfill your request exactly as you would like. The promise is that we will receive mercy and find grace to help us during our time of need. These two promises are important! Mercy is defined as compassion, suggesting Gods quality of steadfast loyalty. No matter what situation you are going through He is loyal, He will not leave you, He will not walk away, no matter how ugly it gets. Grace is defined as kindness, favor and His lovingkindness. These two words are used interchangeably but are different. Mercy has to do with kindness and compassion; many times it is spoken of in terms of God’s not punishing us as our sins deserve. Grace includes kindness and compassion, but also carries the idea of bestowing a gift or favor to us.
That day that I paced and begged God for an answer, he answered me. God showed me in His word that He sympathizes with my pain, that it was appropriate for me to tell Him how I felt, that my rightful place was running to His throne where He would extend grace and mercy. The end result was ultimately in His hands. If today you are struggling in any way, run to Him, don’t wait.