Why do I always expect God to give me things?
Why do I think that God must reward my faithfulness – even though my faithfulness is often lacking?
I expect that he will bless me richly, that he will cause my business to prosper and my life to flourish. I expect that he will give me all of the desires of my heart because, after all, he wants me to be happy.
And I praise him in faith, trusting in his providence. Trusting in his blessing.
But then, I wonder, if I weren't happy – if I were penniless; if my life were to crumble before me; if all that I had and all that I knew were to disappear – would I still praise him?
Could I still praise him?
Could I praise a God who, though he created the harvest, wouldn't give me bread to eat? Could I praise a God who, though he planted the trees, wouldn't give me a roof over my head?
If God, in his mighty power, wouldn't provide such simple commodity, why should I love him?
But then I stop and I think – how weak is my love for the one who gave me breath! If my affection is dependent on the gifts that he bestows upon me, how can I even claim to love my Father?
If I really loved him, it wouldn't matter whether I had food, or shelter, or family, or health. True love for my Father would exist independently of his blessings. True love for my Father would see the value of the simple, extravagant love that he has for me, and would know that it is enough.
And yet the truth is that he does bless me. He has prospered my business, and he has given me many of my heart's desires, and yet still my heart betrays him. What possible excuse could I have for my moments of weakness, my moments of doubt?
His love for me has never wavered, never stumbled, never failed. In this, I find hope – that, in spite of my failures, he loves me still.