I have an acceptance disorder. It’s because I buy into the idea that “everything is possible for one who believes” (Mark 9:23). That creates tension between God and me. Sometimes I just don’t like what he won’t allow. I can’t make peace with it. I plop down next to Job and “give free rein to my complaint” (Job 10:1). I’m frustrated. I’m curdling like cheese inside because I can’t accept that this is how it is and there isn’t anything I can do about it. I grit my teeth and let out a primal scream. Job glances my way and says, “Brother, tell me about it.” Then I poke my head around and see Jesus sitting on the other side of Job politely expressing his complaint: “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me” (Matthew 26:39).
Sometimes God lets us be miracle workers. Amazing that sinners can solve problems! We can overcome evil with good. Those are Emmanuel moments. God is with us. But accepting that some difficult things won’t change is also a challenge we face. After decades of experience wrestling with this dilemma, we still don’t have it figured out. If we accept a bad situation too soon, we could miss out on the next big miracle. If we don’t accept it at all, we could wear ourselves out pushing against God’s resistance. That’s why we not only pray, “God’s will be done.” We also try to do it.