Why does protection hurt?

July 07, 2010

Does that question cause you to wonder if protection does in fact hurt or did you find yourself saying, “Yeah! Why does it hurt?!” I will admit it is a slightly strange concept if you are not pondering the question in spiritual terms; however there actually are many “earthly” ways that protection can hurt us. My parents protected me from birth. Discipline was a form of their loving protection and if you don’t know that discipline hurts than you haven’t had enough of it in your life! My parents also protected me from my siblings (as best as they could), from not knowing God, from making dumb mistakes (not that they were able to prevent them all, but knowledge is power right)? I’ve been protected by the unseen hand of God more times than I’m aware. Protection isn’t bad, but it sure can hurt at times.

My parent’s dog is a purebred German Shepherd. His name is Kody and he comes from a long line of police dogs. When he was just a pup we went and watched his mom perform in a protection demonstration. Full grown men donned padded suits and went out into the middle of a field. The dog owner would enter the field, command their canine to stay at the entrance and then approach the padded man. The padded man would slowly shake the owners hand and then grab a hold of the owner as if he were attacking. In just one word from the owner, the dog would take off like lightening, lunging towards the predator. One giant leap from the canine closed the gap between jaws and padded flesh. The dog would latch onto the arm of the predator and put his jaws on lockdown. The predator could pick up the dog by twirling in a circle, yet the canine protector would not release its hold. Pads don’t protect you from experiencing any pain, they simply soften the blow.

Sometimes I feel like the owner in that field. I approach situations with an open mind and a sincere hope for the best, but before I even sense danger I see a blur flash before my eyes. Something is fighting in my defense! My first thought isn’t about who is fighting for me, instead my mind wonders, “What are you defending me from?” I can’t always see the danger that is waiting to snare me. When I can’t see the red flags or hear the sirens blaring their warning cry, it’s my nature to become defensive too. What are you protecting me from? I don’t need protection from this! ….Or do I?

Too often my vision gets short-sighted. What I can clearly see right in front of me certainly couldn’t look different from far away or down the road, right? After all I’m being responsible; I’m praying for God’s direction, it’s not as if I’m being a rebel! Yet God sees what I can’t. Sometimes He has to stop me from hurting myself, even if I can’t and don’t see the present circumstances as dangerous. Trusting is not easy. It is not natural for my flesh. When something unnatural happens to us, we become hurt. If parasites enter our body, we hurt with sickness. If my finger bends unnaturally, it hurts. If I swallow a chunk of break down the wrong pipe, it hurts. If I’m pushed spiritually and mentally where I didn’t necessarily want to go….it hurts!

As Christians we always claim to want God’s protection but when He protects you from something that you wanted, but God alone knew would be bad, where does that leave you? When you can finally see how it all worked for good, it leaves you on a high, but when you are standing there open mouthed with shock watching your dreams get smacked down, it’s more than a little disheartening. For me it all comes back to God’s perfect timing. I know that I am to trust in it. I know that God has never and will never fail me, but to live it out can be painful at times. However for today, I’m going to rest in the peace that God is for me, not against me. Will you trust and rest in Christ alone?

“But now, O Israel, the LORD who created you says: ‘Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.’ ” Isaiah 43:1-3a (NLT)

Written by: Megan Rupinski (Program Intern)

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