We sing these words…

“The Lord is good to all…and he has compassion on all that he has made!”

But there is more “all” to the story…check out how many times in just a few verses David speaks of the “All.”

v. 9 The Lord is good to all;
    he has compassion on all he has made.
10 All your works praise you, Lord;
    your faithful people extol you.

13 The Lord is trustworthy in all he promises
    and faithful in all he does.
14 The Lord upholds all who fall
    and lifts up all who are bowed down.
15 The eyes of all look to you,
    and you give them their food at the proper time.

17 The Lord is righteous in all his ways
    and faithful in all he does.
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him,
    to all who call on him in truth.

20 The Lord watches over all who love him,
    but all the wicked he will destroy.

It’s this beautiful interchange between the Lord is good to all and the Lord is faithful in all his ways.

And in all its beauty it finds itself in an ugly reality – the heart of men.

The Reality

If you’re like me sometimes you struggle with why God seems to be blessing and doing great things in the lives of others and somehow overlooking your life.

v. 9 The Lord is good to all

It’s a question of why do others get the miracles in areas my heart craves and I don’t?

v. 9 The Lord is good to all

Why does James get beheaded (Acts 12:2) in the same chapter that Peter gets miraculously rescued (Acts 12:7-9)?

v. 9 The Lord is good to all

Why do some get everything their heart desires (family, ministry, and more) and others miss out no matter how much they pray?

v. 9 The Lord is good to all

These are genuine questions that are found in the depths of the heart, questions that don’t always have the most satisfactory answer.  Why did Abraham get a lot of grace for his mistakes and Moses messes up one time and is not allowed to go into the Promised Land?

We all have our prefabricated answers:

“It was because Moses was a leader.”

“It was because Peter had a praying church and they obviously didn’t pray much for James.”

“It’s because there is evil in the world and it’s up to God’s people to reverse that.”

“It’s because you’re not doing enough.”

These answers are all fine and may even be true, but when it is you who are in the pit of hurt and pain because your prayers aren’t answered after decades, or something doesn’t ever come to pass, it’s a whole different matter.   The heart isn’t satisfied.

Thoughts

Everyone is in different situations. Some have a great marriage and good children but are in dire straights financially and hate their jobs.  Another has a wonderful job and sufficient finance but a prodigal son or daughter that breaks their heart.  A third has a miserable marriage and difficult children but has good friends she relies on in her distress.  The kid in Cambodia doesn’t have more than 1 pair of clothes and is hungry a lot but he has great friends and he is a valuable contributor his family when he and his friends go fishing which is exceeding relational wealth.

Let’s face it.  Life is horribly messy and painful.

Some areas in our life our blessed and we see God.  Other areas we pray and plead with great cries and buckets of tears and don’t see the answers our whole being cries out for.

But even in this God is present.

It’s just that he shows up in different ways in different people.

I may not have the deepest desires of my heart, but I have experienced great miracles and have been able to travel to places and do things that only the rich and famous have ability to do.

Another person has the desires of their heart with their family but longs for adventure and travel and to do the things that are second nature for me.

While I envy the lives of others, some are envying my life. ??

It’s easy in the dark night of my soul to ache for what I don’t have.  But as I was meditating on this today I realize I need to be more thankful for what the Lord HAS done, instead of seeing all that he hasn’t done.  My heart grieves.  Yes.  But God has also been good.  I can’t deny that.

He is good in ALL his ways.

And while I don’t understand why he doesn’t answer some of my prayers, He is still good.

In All things.

All the Time.

To All.

And that included me.

All the time.