When Jesus Destroys What You Love
A reader struggled with this Second Cup question in Can I Borrow a Cup of Hope?
Our little Bible study group is reading your book Can I Borrow A Cup of Hope? We are on Chapter 2, Lesson 1 and when I got to page 65 the first question stopped me in my tracks.
“When has Jesus destroyed something precious to you…”
I couldn’t answer that because I seriously have never felt that Jesus “destroyed” anything precious to me. I have never felt that it was Jesus’ fault that my life took a turn for the worse.
So, having said that, I’m hoping that maybe you could re-word/explain it so that I can understand the meaning of your question.
Thank you in advance for your time and help,
Hello, C. —how lovely to meet you, I’m so glad you reached out. D. told me her group was reading Cup of Hope together! Let’s look at the question you’re asking about:
This question looks back at the section called New Testament 2.0 on pages 62-64 when we read about Jesus saying, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up” (John 2:19). Peter watched as Jesus dismantled everything the Jews held most dear, even the “wonderful stones” and “wonderful buildings” his disciples admired in their magnificent temple (Mark 13:1). Jesus knew something much better was coming when all believers would become the temple of his Holy Spirit, but that could only happen after Jesus’s own body was destroyed—and resurrected!
Maybe these examples from my life will show you where I’m coming from with this question:
- When my church crumbled after a divisive series of events, I was devastated. It felt like everyone I knew got divorced all at once. God used that terribly difficult time to draw me close to him and introduce me to people who would start a new church together. In that new congregation, which is still thriving today and where my family still worships, I was able to serve, learn, and grow in ways that would not have been possible at the previous church (which is also thriving!). God had something even more beautiful in mind.
- My dreams to work in ministry were destroyed while God made it very clear I was to continue working in our family business. Each day I begged him to either release me for what I wanted to do or equip me for what I needed to do. I was able to help grow our business through a crucial period and learn skills that would be essential in the “more beautiful” things to come. In his perfect timing, God did more than I could have asked or imagined in my calling, my career, my faith, our family, and our business.
- God destroyed false ideas I had about my marriage and rebuilt it into a relationship that is strong, supportive, and safe (you’ll read more about that in Chapter 3!).
The second part of the question reminds me that I can trust God when something precious to me is being destroyed, torn down, set aside, or taken away. The middle part of the transformation—the Saturday between Good Friday and Easter Sunday—can be a dark, hopeless place. I fill my cup with hope by remembering that God has prepared resurrection, new life, and something even more beautiful on the other side of disappointment, loss, and confusion.
When my church was dividing, my dreams were out of reach, and my marriage was struggling it certainly felt like my life was taking a turn for the worse. Is this Jesus’s “fault”? That’s not the word I would use.
- Sometimes Satan shoots fiery arrows at us “to steal and kill and destroy” our hope, our peace, our joy (John 10:10).
- Sometimes the actions of other people impact me in ways that are painful and raw.
- Sometimes hard times are of my own making as I suffer the consequences of my poor decisions, wrongful thinking, and bad behavior.
- But other times, it is God’s own wrecking ball that tears down idols I have constructed in my heart.
That demolition hurts just as badly as the others while he clears a place to dwell with me in purity and peace. He is with us in every circumstance, no matter whose “fault” it is.
By his grace he gives us faith, then we can share with someone who needs to borrow a cup of hope for their own hard time.
The Molding of a Godly Person
When God wants to drill a person,
And thrill a person,
And skill a person.
When God wants to mold a person
To play the noblest part,
When God yearns with all His heart
To create so great and bold a person,
That all the world shall be amazed,
Watch His methods, watch His ways!
How God ruthlessly perfects
Whom He royally elects!
How He hammers them and hurts them,
And with mighty blows converts them
Into trial shapes of clay which
Only God understands;
While their tortured heart is crying
And they lift beseeching hands!
How God bends but never breaks
When their good He undertakes;
How God uses whom He chooses,
And with every purpose fuses them;
By every act induces them
To try His splendor out-
God knows what He’s about.
– Adapted from a poem by Angela Morgan (1875-1957)
How has God molded you (perhaps to your dismay) only to reveal himself through your pain? When has Jesus destroyed something precious to you, only to rebuild it into something more beautiful?
Tell us below, and you will fill someone’s cup with hope!