My husband and I have a habit of writing out our yearly resolutions at the beginning of each year. Last year, we had a common resolution to complete the Bible with a daily plan from January to December. It was a challenge we took up and succeeded with help from God.
The Bible for me is the most interesting and powerful book I have ever had an encounter with. Every book of the Bible has its own powerful message to pass across, leaving me with something to ponder and digest on.
One of the many things I pondered on was the story of Cain from the book of Genesis chapter 4. I meditated on that chapter and began to ask myself – Why not Cain?, Why wasn’t he accepted?, What went wrong? and so on. I felt pity for Cain. Who knows, probably at some certain point, Cain would have asked himself the – “Why not me?” question before he ended up losing it all.
Have you found yourself dealing with situations or people that ain’t comforting, profiting, or reassuring, leading you to the- “Why not me?” questions (Why didn’t I get the job, why you and not me? etc.) and you start losing yourself, your mind, your peace, your dreams/visions, your passion/drive and your purpose, etc.?
Relax and let’s learn from the exemplary Cain.
After being troubled with questions about Cain and his situation, it struck my mind that it would have been Cain if he had put aside the following 5 things:
1. Jealousy – Everyone like Cain at a certain point in life have developed the act of jealousy towards someone either consciously or unconsciously. You will agree with me that jealousy adds nothing to oneself, instead, it takes away even the little you have and leaves you with the – “Why not me?” question. Cain at that point lost his peace to Jealousy.
“And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering: but unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.” (Genesis 4: 4b-5)
Once we lose ourselves to jealousy, we are no longer in control.
2. Impatience – We don’t have to be in a hurry to get only which is good, instead we should see every situation or whatever we are going through as a learning process. That phase of life that you are trying so hard to get rid of will definitely pass away. Don’t lose your peace. Cain was at a season that would have passed away only if he was willing to wait. There is time for everything.
A time to be rejected and a time to be accepted.
A time to be corrected and a time to be appreciated.
A time to weep and a time to laugh (Read Ecclesiastes 3)
“A successful transitioning from one phase of time to another is Patience”
3. Temperament – Psychologist in their research have made us understand that there are four major temperaments of human behavior
It is good and advisable that individual should study his/her own temperament.
“Nothing has a more powerful influence on human behavior than temperament” _ Beverly Lahaye.
I studied Cain to be choleric. It wasn’t his fault to have a choleric temperament, it was his fault to let his temperament get a better part of him. Temperaments are without the influence of the Holy Spirit.
4. Pride – It is pride to think that we can do all things by ourselves, that we know what we know because of how far we have studied or that we do what we do because of how long we have practiced. If only Cain wasn’t full of himself (pride), he would have listened and corrected himself. Genesis 4 vs 6-7a
“And the Lord said unto Cain, why art though wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted?”
In verse 7a, God was telling Cain to do it all over again. Pride will only make you see any kind of correction as hate.
“A man with pride has already lost the battle of life”
5. Faithlessness – Nothing will work the way we want it to if our faith is not put into action. The Bible in the book of Matthew 17:20 (KJV) says –
“And Jesus said unto them, because of your unbelief – for verily I say unto you, if ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, remove hence to yonder place, and it shall remove, and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”
Yes, nothing is impossible with Faith.
I once fell in love with a quote from Dr. James Dobson, “Let your faithfulness when nothing makes sense please God”.
Cain had good intentions with his offering to please God but he was without Faith. Hebrew 11:6a emphasized that – Without faith, it is impossible to please God.
While in the process of writing, I stumbled on a post on WhatsApp that says –
“All my life, I have never made sense for once; I only make faith.”
Let us learn to live by faith in our everyday lives and see the impossible become possible.
“A man without faith is a man without God.”
Permit me to end on this note – When you find yourself asking the – “Why not me?” questions, sit down and write down the things you have to put aside or put in place.
Remember, we can’t keep doing the things we do and expect a different result.