God Knows and Understands
Isaiah 41:10 (ESV)
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
I’ve always had trust issues. Growing up, I witnessed countless two-faced adults who lied and masked their true intentions in order to get what they wanted. These included our relatives who betrayed our family out of greed, and our family-friends whom we trusted and loved but turned cold faced in a matter of seconds. I was also confused by my own parents who pretended like we were a happy family in front of others when in reality we were not.
So from a young age, my view of the world and people became very cynical. When people approached me, I would second guess their intentions and question their motives. My heart was hardened to the people around me. What made things worse was that a few friends whom I thought had loved me not only turned their backs on me but started using my insecurities to bully me. This solidified my belief that I only had myself to trust.
It became difficult for me to trust people and accept their love. Even if they were genuine, I’d ultimately see them in a twisted way. Before I realized, I was more comfortable being by myself, and people’s generosity felt uncomfortable. For a while, I was content with this status quo. I even prided in my independency. But, at the end of the day, I was lonely. This journey was especially grueling, because there was a part of me that desperately wanted to have someone who I could trust and be comforted by. In the end, I just wanted to be loved and be able to love others genuinely.
I tried to fill this void with friends, academic accomplishments, and art, to only realize that nothing was effective. They only accentuated this hollow feeling, which gradually turned into an emotional turmoil. I was frustrated, angry, bitter, and sad. And at one point, it was as if I’ve hit a wall and then, I cracked.
I still remember one Saturday when I went to Morning Prayer. I broke down furiously questioning God about everything - my past, my current situation, and my incompetency to figure out what to do about this mess. I desperately prayed for an answer to my problems. I wanted all my troubles to be taken away. But instead, God gave me a peaceful heart. He was telling me that He knows me and understands my pain, frustration, anger, and everything else that was going on in my life. Most importantly, He gave me assurance that He still loves me even with my flaws.
At first, I didn’t know what this all meant and what to do about it. But gradually, God revealed more of His love during my mission trip to Wales. I was encouraged to see how God was using our ministry and the passion that my sisters and brothers had for Christ to stir and change people’s hearts. They eventually brought healing and restoration in my own heart.
God healed me in a way and at a time I least expected. I am not saying that He took away all of my problems as I still get worried, but I am now able to face my battles with the assurance that I am loved and understood by God. To this day, I wonder if I deserve this love. But one thing I know for sure is that this comfort isn’t just for some but for all of us. I am writing to encourage my sisters and brothers who feel lost and unloved (like I once was) and to invite them to trust God and seek Him. He knows you and understands you better than anyone else in this world.