I’ve worked with teens as a youth pastor since 1981. It is one of my favorite identities.
This means I have talked to a lot of teens. Some who know Jesus and some who don’t. I’ve heard more than once,
“I don’t believe in God. He’s done nothing for me. God is stupid.”
To which I have replied many times, “God is not a stupid God, he is a stooping God.”
Your pain is a beginning or your pain is a door to distrusting God. So before you declare God as stupid, have you ever considered how often God stoops down?
God stoops down to hear you. God stoops down to see you…and change things.
I know this from my own life and from what I have learned out of the book of Psalms, particularly Psalm 18.
But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I prayed to my God for help. He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears. 7 Then the earth quaked and trembled. The foundations of the mountains shook; they quaked because of his anger. 8 Smoke poured from his nostrils; fierce flames leaped from his mouth. Glowing coals blazed forth from him. 9 He opened the heavens and came down; dark storm clouds were beneath his feet. 10 Mounted on a mighty angelic being, he flew, soaring on the wings of the wind. 11 He shrouded himself in darkness, veiling his approach with dark rain clouds. 12 Thick clouds shielded the brightness around him and rained down hail and burning coals. 13 The Lord thundered from heaven; the voice of the Most High resounded amid the hail and burning coals. 14 He shot his arrows and scattered his enemies; great bolts of lightning flashed, and they were confused. 15 Then at your command, O Lord, at the blast of your breath, the bottom of the sea could be seen, and the foundations of the earth were laid bare. 16 He reached down from heaven and rescued me; he drew me out of deep waters.Psalm 18:6-16
I love the narrative description of this Psalm! This God is not aloof. This God is not still. This God is not busy.
And in my distress, he hears me. My cry reaches his ears. And he moves heaven. Then he stoops down from heaven and rescues me.
Psalm 18:35 continues, You have given me your shield of victory. Your right hand supports me; your help has made me great.
God supports me (and you) and he (and she) makes me (and you) great.
This is beautiful truth is repeated more in the Psalms.
Psalm 17:6 – I am praying to you because I know you will answer, O God. Bend down and listen as I pray.
Psalm 31:2 – Turn your ear to listen to me; rescue me quickly. Be my rock of protection, a fortress where I will be safe.
Psalm 86:1 – Bend down, O Lord, and hear my prayer; answer me, for I need your help.
Psalm 102:1-2 – Lord, hear my prayer! Listen to my plea! Don’t turn away from me in my time of distress. Bend down to listen,and answer me quickly when I call to you.
Psalm 113:6 – He stoops to look down on heaven and on earth.
Psalm 116:1-2 – I love the Lord because he hears my voice and my prayer for mercy. 2 Because he bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath!
Psalm 119:135 – Look upon me with love; teach me your decrees.
Psalm 119:153 – Look upon my suffering and rescue me, for I have not forgotten your instructions.
Psalm 144:7 – Reach down from heaven and rescue me; rescue me from deep waters, from the power of my enemies.
I just wanted to pass on these many beautiful verses from the Bible to you.
Then there is the one story of Jesus. It is when he meets the “adulterous woman” who is nearly naked and caught in her sin and shame. He is asked to cast judgment on her. But what does he do?
They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger.John 8:6
This God is not aloof. This God is not still. This God is not busy. This God is not on the edge of his seat waiting to punish you. This God is stooping down and writing in the dirt of your life.
Your dirt. Your life.
This is not a stupid God. This is a God who is for you. This is a Larger Story God who is very interested in you—even your pain.
I invite you to find this God who is for you. Who is stooping to find you.