“…Even though the Gentiles were not trying to follow God’s standards, they were made right with God. And it was by faith that this took place. But the people of Israel, who tried so hard to get right with God by keeping the law, never succeeded. Why not? Because they were trying to get right with God by keeping the law instead of by trusting in him. They stumbled over the great rock in their path. God warned them of this in the Scriptures when he said, ‘I am placing a stone in Jerusalem that makes people stumble, a rock that makes them fall. But anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced.’ “ 9:30-33
Have you been here before? Getting so wrapped up in the religion and logistics of Christianity that you miss an opportunity to be right with God? Do you miss out on God when he’s right in front of you, like a boulder laying in the road?
Paul reminds us here that God doesn’t want perfection from us, he just wants our trust.
For me, today, this means reading verses in the Bible that become like a sticky piece of tape and still deciding that I trust God. He loves me, and he has proven time after time that he is holy, perfectly sovereign and I am far, far better off alongside him than apart from him. I read Romans 9, my brow furrows and my questions start firing out like an automatic pitching machine, lobbing one doubt after another. I don’t fully know what to do with the theology from today’s text, and maybe I never will. But I have full confidence that God loves me and his grace meets all my needs.
Do you feel like you can trust God? Why or why not? You are not doing him any favors by maintaining an anxious, fear-filled relationship with him. He doesn’t want you checking any religious boxes out of duty. He wants you to exhale in the midst of your doubts and choose to trust him. If you aren’t there with him, where you feel safe and fully trust him, be honest about that! Unpack that with him. Do the internal work it takes to sort that out, heal it and reconcile what’s going on. It doesn’t mean you will get all the answers and it absolutely does NOT mean you won’t go through hard things. But it will bring you into a safe, healthy, BEAUTIFUL relationship with Jesus.