Some of you have never heard the phrase “hit upside the head.” I’m sorry you had such a deprived upbringing. It is the equivalent of “being knocked upside the head,” or “having some sense knocked into you.”
If this is still unclear, the idea is some of us are so hard headed, so stubborn, so rebellious, the only way we will ever see the truth is when we face the hard realities of life.
There is something I call “the big stick of reality.” It goes like this: A man lives with a fantasy of leaving his wife to pursue some sexual fantasy. In his mind, he sketches out a beautiful scenario that focuses on all his needs being met. He takes steps to put his fantasy into motion. He tells his wife he is leaving. She does not receive the news calmly, as in his fantasy. There is, in fact, a scene. Soon his wife has a lawyer. He must get one too (Someone once told me lawyer conference rooms were the place fantasies go to die). He faces the reality of alimony and child support and jail. He is being hit upside the head with the big stick of reality.
God does this. His people, Israel, had a fantasy that they could worship God on the Sabbath, and live pretty much as they please Sunday through Friday. God tried to warn them, but they wouldn’t listen. So God sent an invading army, and the next thing you know, people are losing their homes, are carried into exile, and lose their national identity. That is being hit upside the head with a big stick of reality.
Human beings have a tremendous capacity for denial. God doesn’t want to use the big stick of reality. He wants us to be drawn to His love and grace. But we are stubborn. So out comes the stick and we get the hit upside the head.
Here’s the funny thing: When people get hit with reality, usually in the form of consequences for their own decisions, who do they get mad at? Themselves? Nope! They get mad at God, claim He is being unfair.
Before you blame God, you might just want to check in with Him. See if your current big stick of reality upside your head is really God telling you He loves you so much, He’s wiling to cause you some pain to get to get your attention.