I remembered a “why” the other day that I wanted once to ask my Dad when I was just a little boy. It had to do with frogs, and it remains unanswered. Curious, like all children, I was filled with “why” questions. In this particular instance, it had to do with frogs because we had been out gigging frogs on a Texas pond in the dark mosquito-clouded night. The frogs were croaking like crazy and easy to trace down and stab to provide for tomorrow’s fried frog leg breakfast.
I wanted to know why they were croaking so loud when they knew we were coming after them in the boat. And I wanted to know why there was no-where for them to go but this pond . . . or the frying pan. Why didn’t they climb up the banks and go over the hill and hop along to a different pond, a safer place?
I think instead that I asked Daddy why there were more stars in the country sky than in the city . . . and I’m pretty sure he answered that one. But the frogs remained a mystery, drifting into the memory of a million “why’s” I never got to ask. I probably yawned and scratched a bite or two and we went to shore and left the why of the frog behind on a crowded lily pad.
If I had a million for my dad . . . can you imagine the gazillions that drift heavenward? How many times must God have heard “Why, God?”
Why won’t they?
Why is it still here?
Why haven’t you?
Why haven’t they?
Why haven’t I?
Why . . . why?
I had five children. They wanted to know why. Why can’t we go there? Why do we have to go here? Why can’t I have this? Why do I have to have that? Why doesn’t it work? Why can’t we afford it? Why do the leaves fall?
Why did you? Fall.
Sometimes when they were little, after an exhausting round of explaining why this and why that, the eventual bottom-line would be reached: “Because I said so.”
God does the same thing sometimes. He says “Be still . . . and know that I am God.” I think that’s a lot like “Because I said so.”
Sometimes we take really good care of our “why’s.” We build fences and haul in feed and water and brush the coats and protect them like our favorite pets. “This one is not getting loose. I kinda’ like ‘why me?’ My favorite.”
And God says, “Be still.”
But what about this why and that why?
Obviously God has always known of our propensity to find the nearest slippery slope and try it out like some new ride at Six Flags, ready to give it a rating at the end of the track. Man . . . that was fast, that was bumpy, that was quite a ride . . . awesome experience . . . freaky . . . deadly.
But God . . . when I am still, my mind is filled to overflowing with “why’s.” I need to keep moving. At least when I’m on the slope I don’t have to figure out all those answers to all those “why’s.”
“And know that I am God.”
When my children would not give up on asking all their “whys” to wear me down, I usually responded with a distracting promise: “Want a cookie?” I think today’s parents probably pop in a video. Same thing. Distract. Deflect. Divide and conquer.
God says, “Know that I am God.” He doesn’t deflect or distract; He draws us right in to Him and reminds us He knows the answer to every why. And every “why me?” He knows me better than I know myself so when it comes to trusting and obeying, it really makes no sense to ask “why?” But, I do.
There’s really only one answer. For God’s glory. Why me? For God’s glory. Why now? For God’s glory. Why not? For God’s glory. Why confess? For God’s glory. Why repent? For God’s Glory.
But there’s a few nagging “why’s” that surely tempt God to want to just lean across the seat and say “Want a cookie?”
What about the “why again?” Answer: because you haven’t transformed your mind.
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — His good, pleasing and perfect will. — Romans 12:2
What about the “why won’t they forgive?” Answer: “Forgive them. And wait.”
Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. — Matthew 18:21-22
What about “why is ‘it’ still here?” or “why haven’t You?” Answer: “My grace is sufficient.”
Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. — 2 Corinthians 12:8-9
“For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” — John 3:16.
I ask why and instead of a cookie, He gives me His son. Why would I ever think it was not enough?
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