If that’s not enough to get your attention then I’m not sure what else I can say to entice you. As Christians we are called to serve a great, all-knowing, all-powerful, holy God. That call means obedience, and sometimes that same obedience means a whole lot of pain.
We have evolved towards a tendency to neglect certain emotions as they pertain to God. A lot of Christians think they are not allowed to mourn because we serve a God who gives us hope, but Jesus himself displays the beauty of "lament" as he weeps for the suffering and death for his friend, Lazarus. The same goes for anger we may feel towards God for allowing us to suffer. Because our God is so great we are under this impression that we won’t get angry or become frustrated with the things He has called us to.
But anger is a feeling, feelings are natural, and oftentimes they do not agree what we logically believe to be “right”.
I have been angry with God in the past and I know that there may be a time in the future when I am angry with Him again. God blessed me for a short time with something beautiful, and now it is gone. The exact details are unimportant in the face of its absence- Whether He took it from me or allowed it to be taken, it was in His control to stop and He allowed it to happen. The reality is that it is gone.
Let’s think about God for a moment. He created the universe, He created you and me, He knows literally everything that has ever happened, is happening, and will ever happen. I do not think He is intimidated, nor is He surprised by my anger.
I’ve seen it demonstrated countless times that parents tell their children that they can’t do something or have something, and the child gets angry. The anger of the child is not an unexpected reaction. What interests me is the reaction of the parent to that anger. In the midst of the tantrums the same expression appears on that parent’s face almost every time.
It is an expression of both compassion and sympathy. A parent knows that the anger is not a direct result of the parent’s actions, but the pain and disappointment from not getting what the child so desperately wanted.
This is where our anger comes from, and our God knows that.
In my spirit of anger and pain it has been tempting to demand things from God. To repeat things such as “Okay, God. I have been obedient and You’ve got my attention, so let’s see it. Show me something. Tell me why I am suffering.” But I do not deserve anything. The reality is that the blessing I so abruptly lost I never deserved in the first place. The reality is that my responsibility of obedience is to God, but God does not owe any responsibility to me.
Being angry with God is okay, just don’t get stuck there.
Sometimes when we are angry with God, there is an instant temptation to run away from Him, as you may see Him as the conductor of your pain. it becomes tempting to run from Him. We want to run from Him the way Adam and Eve ran from Him. But this will provide no lasting solution, it will only amplify your anguish by abandoning the only one who will truly be with you as you suffer.
Please do not do this.
Being angry with God is so similar to being angry with anyone else; if you do not confront them, that anger festers and turns into bitterness, and the bitterness then into resentment. When you go to God He will comfort you, it will still hurt, but He will be there. He understands you at this very moment.
When Jesus was dying on the cross, Matthew 27:46 tells us that, “About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?" (which means "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).” It was not uncommon for Jews during this time to have the entire bible memorized, so when Jesus spoke these words, He knew that they would recognize it as a reference to Psalm 22 which begins, “My God, My God, Why have You forsaken me?”. This same Psalm ends with, “All the rich of the earth will feast and worship; all who go down to the dust will kneel before him— those who cannot keep themselves alive. Posterity will serve him; future generations will be told about the Lord. They will proclaim his righteousness, declaring to a people yet unborn: He has done it!”
David cried out the the Lord, but in the end he praises Him for His righteousness, for what he knows the Lord can do and what He has already done for him.
Take your anger to the Lord, and you will end up praising Him when you realize His complete faithfulness in all things, and that He will never abandon you.
How capable He is of doing anything, and how faithful He will be in any circumstance.
In my frustrations with God, because I am honest with Him about them, at the height of my tears and tantrums, there is a still quiet voice within that is still comforted by His presence, and I am reminded of His faithfulness. I am humbled by this voice because it reminds me that this is not my story, this is His story. While He promises to make this broken vessel of mine someday glorious in its perfection, the truth is that we will never see it this side of heaven. Sometimes even that is frustrating, until I realize that the race I am running is not toward all of the blessings that His faithfulness could bring, but to my Creator, my Father, the only One who deserves my mind, my soul, and my strength.
My anger may have subsided, but that does not mean it does not still hurt, or make me sad. Thankfully I know that my God is faithful. I also know that even though it hurts, the greatest opportunity I have to grow closer to God is in my hardship, and in my pain.
Psalm 22 My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from my cries of anguish? My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, but I find no rest. Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One; you are the one Israel praises. In you our ancestors put their trust; they trusted and you delivered them. To you they cried out and were saved; in you they trusted and were not put to shame. But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by everyone, despised by the people. All who see me mock me; they hurl insults, shaking their heads.“He trusts in the Lord,” they say, “let the Lord rescue him. Let him deliver him, since he delights in him.” Yet you brought me out of the womb; you made me trust in you, even at my mother’s breast. From birth I was cast on you; from my mother’s womb you have been my God. Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help. Many bulls surround me; strong bulls of Bashan encircle me. Roaring lions that tear their prey open their mouths wide against me. I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint. My heart has turned to wax; it has melted within me. My mouth is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth; you lay me in the dust of death. Dogs surround me, a pack of villains encircles me; they pierce my hands and my feet. All my bones are on display; people stare and gloat over me. They divide my clothes among them and cast lots for my garment. But you, Lord, do not be far from me. You are my strength; come quickly to help me. Deliver me from the sword, my precious life from the power of the dogs. Rescue me from the mouth of the lions; save me from the horns of the wild oxen. I will declare your name to my people; in the assembly I will praise you. You who fear the Lord, praise him! All you descendants of Jacob, honor him! Revere him, all you descendants of Israel! For he has not despised or scorned the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help. From you comes the theme of my praise in the great assembly; before those who fear you I will fulfill my vows.The poor will eat and be satisfied; those who seek the Lord will praise him— may your hearts live forever! All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the Lord, and all the families of the nations will bow down before him, for dominion belongs to the Lord and he rules over the nations. All the rich of the earth will feast and worship; all who go down to the dust will kneel before him— those who cannot keep themselves alive. Posterity will serve him; future generations will be told about the Lord. They will proclaim his righteousness, declaring to a people yet unborn: He has done it!