Looking back on my articles from last year, I found that I have shared several testimonies on the blessings from the Lord. At that time, I consider blessings are things that I sought and received because of my belief in God.
For example, I have now found a decent job and an ideal apartment. When I eventually got them, I thought these were blessings from the Lord because of my prayers and beliefs and actions. Recently, I had a time to ponder over the 'idea of blessing'.
Rethinking of my faith
“Will you still believe in God, even if you had not been given that job?” my friend Yi Qing asked so after hearing my story - how I gained my job by following God’s guidance - as I thought.
I became silent for a while, as I had never thought about such scenario. For a long time, I prayed and told God about my inner desires, which included problems I had faced and a dilemma I was in. I thought that God responded to me and blessed me by giving me the job I want. And I was proud to share it as a personal testimony. To be honest, I never have thought how I would think and react if I didn’t get that job.
Yi Qing’s query made me think deeper about my faith towards God. Does blessing merely mean getting stuff we want by praying to God? Cain’s lesson
I didn’t find the answer until I learned the story of Cain in the English Bible study group.
It seems strange that Cain’s generation flourished after he killed his brother Abel and received curses from God. What sounds more reasonable to the readers is that Cain may lead a poor and miserable life when God cursed him. However, his descendants achieved great successes in different areas and lived prosperous lives.
Is God’s judgment unfair? Isn’t Cain supposed to be cursed? Why did he live as though he was blessed?
It’s a great relief to learn that the main reason is because Cain belongs to the earth! So he gets benefits from the world. Even though he seems better off on the outside, his generation was getting worse and worse inside.
Lamech, the descendant of Cain, turns out to boast about himself and puts himself over his ancestor and God. “If Cain is avenged seven times, then Lamech seventy-seven times.”(Genesis 4, versus 24).
Earthly blessings end up to be curses! For worldly blessings don’t change their moral insides. They are no part of God’s kingdom and forbidden by God forever.
We must not be like Cain who enjoys great worldly blessings, but does not know God at all! There is nothing wrong to ask from God for the things we lack. Actually, God is glad to see us coming to Him. As He said: “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”(Matthew 7, versus 7)
However, the point is whether we put God ahead of our worldly desires; or we just worship Him as other idols who could satisfy our earthly requests.
If we could confirm that God is always in the first place no matter what, I believe that our Lord would give us more than we could imagine. For He knows the best of us and in Him we lack nothing.
Now my answer towards the question is a firm yes! Yes, I will love and believe in God even if I am not given what I want! For everything is a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
Cheng Xingyi's previous articles may be found at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/cindy-cheng.html
Cindy Cheng was born and brought up in central China. Cindy enjoys travelling and reading history books. Cindy is inspired by talking with local people when travelling abroad experiencing different parts of the world, as well as herself.
Cindy’s previous articles may be found at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/cindy-cheng.html