The Question is What not Why Acts 9:6 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
Paul asked “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do,” [Acts 9:6]? That question is so much better than the question, “Why hast thou made me thus,” [Rom 9:20]? People get stuck wherever they run into trouble with God when they ask the question “why.” It’s a question, as we discussed in the broadcast titled, “God, Why,” that just doesn’t lead to much more than bitterness toward God. There’s never a satisfactory answer.
The question is what not why. With the question, “What,” you can get somewhere with the Lord. You can move forward, as some say. You come to the Lord right where you are. You are looking for what to do now that you are in the case that you are in whether your situation is good or bad. When you ask the question what:
You are looking for God’s will – Acts 27:25 – Paul wasn’t wringing his hands asking why he was about to be shipwrecked; he was asking what he should do – and the Lord showed him in v.24 – the whole boat load of prisoners was saved – when you ask “what” you are not stuck on what could have been; you are moving forward on what can be – you make the best of what, at the time, is a bad situation.
You are recovering from the shock – Acts 16:25 – Paul and Silas weren’t sitting around crying about their unjust wounds and they weren’t fussing at God for leading them into a trap – they looked at what they should do and they did it – they did what they always did at this time of night; they prayed and sang praises unto God – with the question “why” you are reliving the shock – with the question “what” you are moving past the shock.
You are forestalling depression – 2 Cor 4:7-9 – Paul could have become so despondent with his life – everywhere he went, he met up with trouble – and yet he never got depressed – when you go through trouble, you may be hurt or you may be grieving – but when you ask “what” you are determining not to stay there.
You are depending upon God’s grace – 2 Cor 12:9-10 – Paul learned that he could not work in his own strength – even though Paul was a tough man, he had his limits and God made sure to take him to his limits so that Paul would know that it was by the grace of God that he was able to minister the way he did – God’s grace can only strengthen you when you acknowledge your weakness and his strength – and trouble is a great way for you and me to turn from our own strength and rely upon God’s.
You are living with purpose – 2 Cor 4:15 – Paul never took his eyes off of his course and his purpose for living – when you go through trouble and come out on the other side, you aren’t just an existing victim of circumstance or a walking pity party – you have something to do for the Lord, a way to serve him and others – coming out of the trouble helps you to sharpen your focus and turn your attention to others and to the glory of God – through this you often find your ministry of consolation.
You are encouraging others – Phil 1:14 – when Paul went through trouble, others became bolder to preach the gospel as a result – when others see you bounce back from a fall or from getting knocked down, they rally around you – they aren’t there to keep you going, necessarily, although some may be there for that reason – many are there to “get some of what you’ve got” – they want some of that to rub off on them!!
Conclusion: Next time you face trouble ask the question “what” and you will begin to see God moving in your life in a way that will verify Rom 8:28, magnify God’s glory [2 Cor 4:15] and satisfy your soul [2 Cor 11:30-31].