Monday, August 8, 2011

When God seems absent

Life could be so much easier to understand if God was visible and sitting down in the living room with me for a long chat. I could ask the tough questions, like why do people hurt one another; why does there have to be war and why do children die. Would He tell me? I wonder.

When adversity knocks on the door. . . and it will . . . why does God seem absent from my circumstances? It is easy to think that because I am a Christian, I should be insulated from this roller coaster ride of life filled with persecution; rejection or poor treatment from others. After all, we act like we are the priviliged ones here in the USA.

I have tried to treat others with compassion and do the right thing in my relationships. Why should I be subject to these inconveniences?

My faith in God should be strong enough to find the silver lining in any negative circumstance. Shouldn't it?

Is my faith limited to the blessings part of life?

Where is God when families lose their jobs, homes or health? When life dumps sorrow upon sorrow . . . does God even care? Have you wondered about this even a little?

I recently counseled a women who feels like God had abandoned her in a time of crisis and after all she had done to serve Him was a cosmic joke. He is totally she felt on that day. She asks and doesn't receive. She prays to a God who ignores her...or does He?

She asked me to pray . . . because I at least think someone is listening. She was looking for a new place to live; closer to work, within her budget and open to her dog. The search had not resulted in any remote possibilities. So, I not only talked to God . . . but He talked to me. Told me the town she should look in for a place, and to give it 2 days. I told her what I heard . . . and she scoffed. God doesn't talk back. Really?

Well, two days later, she had a place in that town, all requirements met . . .and she didn't know how I knew that would happen. I listened.

I don't always listen that well, but this time I did. She has a renewed faith because God finally heard someone's prayer. But what about when it seems like He's just not interested?

I think about Job who lost his home; land; family and friends. The friends he had left told him to curse God and die! With friends like that, who need them?

Things didn't turn around over night, but eventually everything was restored. All the followers of Christ lost their lives when they refused to deny him. I wonder . . . would I lose heart if everything went wrong?

There are examples every day of bad things happening to good people and adversity knocking on the door. So what do we do?

  1. Stop . . . breathe. Breath and Spirit are the same word and it is spirit that connects us to one another. That's why we care about injustice and pain.

  2. Be Thankful. Remember the things that have worked out in the past. Pray for others.

  3. If you can't change it, release it to God. Praise God for all the things He has done in the past, and Remember them during the hard times.

    You can see the hand of God in your life and the lives of others regardless of circumstances. There are prayers being lifted all around the world, by all kinds of faith followers . . . and God is listening. So, until we meet Him face to face to ask those hard questions . . . Listen and encourage one another. This too, will pass.