God’s Grief

1 07 2013

“The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the LORD regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart.” – Genesis 6:5-6

My kitchen table is a funny place. More happens around that table than just receiving nourishment. It is a place of insight, prayer, deep conversation, laughter, and connection. Today, I was sitting in my spot at the table eating my morning yogurt. On my left, my Bible was open. To my right, the front page of the newspaper was spread out. I always read my Bible as I start my day, and then turn my attention to the news.

This morning, the contrast between the two pages could not have been more striking or heartbreaking. The words of my Bible opened my eyes to God’s glory, His call to holiness, and His deep desire to transform us into a people that are inhabited by His Spirit, defined by His presence, and shaped by His purpose.

The front page of the newspaper highlighted the celebration of a recent Supreme Court decision, a story about a mother’s abuse of a child, the latest celebrity misstep, and the glee one group is exhibiting over the troubles of another group.

I put my head in my hands as my heart ached. How should we respond to the headlines? There are many ways to read the newspaper. I could fold it up and ignore it. I could shake my head. I could get angry, frustrated, or self-righteous. But when God sees evil, He grieves. It hurts His heart. Our evil actions touch the heart of God in a way that moves Him to sorrow. It breaks His heart to see sin take up residence in our world and in our hearts. There is something sobering in realizing that my behavior, my choices, and my decisions have the power to impact God in such a profound way.

My Jesus Resolution today is to be aware of the connection between my heart and the heart of God. It is easy to read the newspaper and point at “them.” But the sin that worms its way into my heart is just as dark, just as repugnant, and causes Him just as much grief as the sin heralded on the front page headlines. Today I want to ask how the choices I make, the actions I take, and the words I say will be heard and seen in heaven. Will they bring Him honor or will they cause Him grief?


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