Today in staff devotions our director read the Bible passage about how God can do immeasurably more than we ever hope for. Then he asked us to share situations in our life that we think are too big for God to handle. This happens to touch on some things I've been working through lately.
Recently I was catching up with a good friend I had not seen in a while. I was sharing about my struggle with the tension between God's will and our free choice. I first grasped this concept during a theology class in college. My favorite passage growing up was Jeremiah 29:11 "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord." I believed whole heartedly in God's will for my life and had no question that God was "in control" of my life. So when I first understood what free will meant, I had a hard time really coming to terms with how God's will relates to my own free choice. I still go in circles at times. I get the basics but my struggle relates to trusting God to be bigger than our own mistakes. I know that God is able to heal any brokenness, regardless of the size, shape, or form. But what about when we are so stubborn that we refuse to listen? And how do you pray for someone when you know that their stubbornness and decisions to shut out God may never change? Again, I know God can change hearts, but he can't and won't force it. He WANTS us to choose him freely. So I just go around and around in circles with these questions, which are nowhere near black and white.
I know and trust that God CAN do more than I can even imagine. So, I guess at this point that's where I must put my hope because from my human point of view some things feel impossible, unrealistic, or just hopeless.