I Think God Hates Me
A Daily Encounter reader writes: "I believe in God but I have to tell you at times I think God hates me. I feel like I must have done something bad. It seems in my life, when it rains it pours. I take two steps forward I go two steps back. Can you please help me to understand?"
Dear Jane (name changed), as I often tell people when it comes to trying to understand and resolve personal problems: "The problem is never the problem." By this I mean that, more often than not, the problem we see isn't the problem that is. What we usually see is the symptom of the problem, but not the root cause. To resolve the problem it is imperative that we face and resolve the root cause/s.
Because, at times, you feel that God hates you sounds as if, in your past, you may have felt that a significant male hated you. I wonder if you may have had a confusing relationship with your father when you were growing up and never felt certain whether or not he loved you. I say this because we tend to project onto God, our Heavenly Father, exactly how we feel or felt towards our earthly father.
If a person had a close, loving and warm relationship with his or her father and felt loved and affirmed by him, it is very easy to feel close to and loved and affirmed by God. But if she had a distant relationship with her father, or never felt truly loved or affirmed by him, chances are that she won't feel close to God either—and at times feel that he doesn't love her—or even hates her. I know because I had to resolve this issue in my own life having come from a very dysfunctional family background and can't ever remember feeling close to my father.
So how do you overcome and resolve these disturbing feelings?
First, I suggest that you earnestly pray that God will reveal to you the truth of your feelings; that is, the root cause of your feeling that sometimes God hates you. Keep in mind that once you clearly see the root cause, you can then see what you need to do to resolve your problem. As the greatest teacher of all times once said, "You will know the truth and the truth will set you free."1 Without access to the truth, there is no healing or recovery, and we stay "stuck" in our situation.
Second, if these feelings run deep, chances are you may need to see a capable Christian counselor to help you resolve the root cause of your problem. For counseling resources visit the http://www.actsweb.org/counseling_resources.php website.
Third, every day remind yourself of this truth—regardless of how you feel—a truth for which you can be 100 percent certain: No matter what you have ever done or have failed to do God loves you (and always will) totally, fully and unconditionally. And daily thank God for his unfailing love.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank you that when 'I have unresolved personal issues, you give me symptoms.' In all of my struggles please give me the courage and help I need to see and confront the root cause or causes of my problem, and to find the help I need to overcome. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
NOTE: The issue we have addressed in this Daily Encounter points out the critical need and importance for a father's love and affirmation of every child during their formative years. We ignore this divine principle to the peril of our children and their generation.
1. Jesus Christ in John 8:32.