God, faith, and our messy, messy world.

Our world is a mess. Atheist or believer, this is our common ground. We are cohabitants in a land that contains the potential for great good and horrific evil.

Each person has the potential for good and evil. God gave us the powerful gift of choice. Each person must choose which force will rise as victor. For centuries, the vast majority have chosen wrong.

Where is God? 

It is okay to question God, but it is wrong to question His goodness and holy character. Bring your questions with the understanding that God is beyond our understanding. Ask in humility, knowing God is the authority. None of our questions are too hard for God (Kevin Weeks).

In biblical times, God has used the most wicked people to show his people how far they had strayed. Evil appeared to win. Sound familiar? Does it raise an important question? Why doesn’t God stop bad things from happening?

That’s not fair.

If God were fair every single person would be condemned to die. There is none righteous, not one. Yet God offers us hope in Jesus. Yes, all evil deserves 100_2129punishment. Evil acts like the recent bombing and school killings deserve, and I hope they receive, the full consequences of their choices under the law.

However, I too deserve punishment. I too, have sinned. I too deserve to fall under the full weight of God’s punishment. If God were fair, I would. I am thankful that God is not fair. The unfairness of His grace, love and justice come together in forgiveness through Christ.

Everyone has dirty hands in this messy world.

How do I trust God when the world has turned upside down?

Remember that God came. I do not cope with mankind’s bent toward destruction alone. God came. He came for me, in the person of Jesus. He came for you. He offers deliverance from sin. What matters most is not wrapped up in this life, but is wrapped up in the life to come. This life is unfair, but the next one is not.

What is the point?

I am not here to find satisfaction or fair treatment in the world, as it is now. I forfeit a wonderful encounter with an all-powerful God by searching, as if it were my due, for those things.

I am here to bring glory to God. In all circumstances. In all times. That can happen only if I pray for God to work as if it is His glory that really matters. Because, it is His glory that really matters. It is God’s glory on the line. His goodness. His character. I must pray that He will be glorified in me, regardless of the circumstances.

“If you have a God great enough and powerful enough to be mad at because he doesn’t stop your suffering, you also have a God who’s great enough and powerful enough to have reasons that you can’t understand. You can’t have it both ways (Timothy Keller, King’s Cross).”

What in the World is God Doing?

Sunday morning we began a sermon series that I am anxious to continue. We are working through the book of Habakkuk. (Yup, that’s right – Habakkuk.) Habakkuk is a small Old Testament book packed with content. The prophet questions God about the troubling events he witnesses in his world. God’s mysterious ways puzzle Habakkuk.

Sound familiar?

What I see around me often troubles me. Evil appears to be in the lead and going unpunished and God seems silent. Why do innocent people suffer from natural disasters and at the hands of evil?

“Just because God is silent doesn’t mean He is absent (Pastor Kevin).”

Kevin goes on to support his statement with scripture. God is working. I suggest if any of these questions resonate with you, click here to listen to the sermon on Habakkuk titled, “Why Doesn’t God Stop Bad Things From Happening?”

We only made it part way through the first chapter yesterday, but I read ahead. (Spoiler alert!) By the end of the book, Habakkuk is changed. He learns to wait and trust in God and that God’s justice is far beyond his comprehension. He learns to be content even though he doesn’t always understand.

That’s the kind of contentment I want in my life. Contentment that comes from knowing life is not about me and never has been, contentment that refuses to worry about the things I can’t control or understand. God’s purpose for the world will prevail and I choose to live by faith.