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How easy to believe in the “Disappointed God”


What would you say if someone asked you, “Are you pleased with the life you have lived?” I have heard many variations of this question and often the answer given is, “I have no regrets.” When I hear that, I doubt if the people are being fully honest.  Following is the answer William Stunz gave when asked by Theodore Dalrymple. His difficult but honest answer resonates within my soul.

No. I’m not displeased in the sense that I never got to see that or do this or enjoy something else . . . I am utterly satisfied with my life in those terms. I have gotten many more good things than I could deserve in any conceivable way. I have been incredibly more blessed, along multiple dimensions, than I would have imagined . . .

What I am displeased with is my own living of life. I feel an acute sense that I ought to have done better with the circumstances I was given . . . I find it so very, very easy to believe in a God who is profoundly disappointed in me.

It seems utterly natural to believe in the Disappointed God, because I myself am disappointed . . . How could he not be disappointed? That makes complete sense to me. It’s the other God, the God who does not experience that kind of disappointment, the God who sees me the way that Prodigal Son’s father saw him—that is the harder God for me to believe in. It takes work for me to believe in that God.

Like Stunz, by faith, I cling to the God who redeems and restores for purposes of His glory that I do not fully understand. For more about Stunz, read here and here.

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