In times filled with horrors like pandemic, murder, riot, injustice, and more, I think a natural question we come to ask is how could a good God allow such horrible things to happen? I think it’s a fair question, but I think it takes away most if not all personal responsibility. I think the question for me is how have I contributed and how do I respond? I think we tend to have a backwards way of thinking: God wants “the good life” for me, therefore, he wants me to be happy. I think this is only partially true. When my personal happiness is at the center, then that becomes the desired end product of every action and situation. This leaves me feeling dissatisfied when I’m uncomfortable or not happy. Which, in turn, misses the good life that God is actually trying to lead me towards. I believe that God, indeed, is a good Father, and he wants “the good life” for me – but that is not centered around my personal happiness. The good life is much deeper than my gratification and easy living. The good life is being a part of God’s Kingdom rather than trying to build my own. Being a citizen of his kingdom means my life should be filled with loving my neighbor, serving others, seeing beauty all around me, being humble, loving righteousness, grieving over injustice, and stepping into whatever God calls. I want to have this kind of good life. But I confess that this does not come naturally. I’d much rather be comfortable than see the hut around me. Especially when that hurt is beyond my understanding or my ability to fix. However, for the follower of Christ, these things are not suggestions or merely good ideas. They are commands. Part of being a part of the Kingdom of God means I sit under Christ’s authority as he is my King. So for me the question comes down to, am I willing to sit under Christ’s authority as King? Am I willing to believe that tears and mourning are not evil but may actually be the very thing that brings life and beauty out of death and filth?
This week as I’ve viewed the injustices in our country, I’ve been left with many questions and few answers. All I can say is I want to learn. I want to listen. I want to mourn. I want to lament. I want to be more like Jesus.
“Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.”