Tuesday, October 18, 2016

OCTOBER 18 "DOES GOD HAVE A SICK SENSE OF HUMOR?"

     WE read in the Book of Psalms quite a depressing passage, written by a man who really seems to be struggling in his Faith, depressed and at Witt's end.  Have you been there or are you there today?  As depressing as it is to read I am glad that God did not purposely keep such writings out of his Book.
14 Why, LORD, do you reject me and hide your face from me......You have taken from me friend and neighbor— darkness is my closest friend."  That's some scary stuff coming out of the mouth of someone that supposedly has a relationship with God. He's accusing God of rejecting him, hiding from him and taking from him. It would be wise before we passed judgement on this fellow, that we realize if we serve God for any length of time, we too will have to cross this bridge to continue along God's path for your life. Every comes to this bridge, to various degrees and must either cross it and go on or turn back. Jesus himself cried out "why have you forsaken me" and so will we at one point or another, sometimes more than once.  At this crossroads in our faith we have two choices. We either continue to cry out to God as the man is doing or we quit, we decide that's it, I am done with this whole faith and God thing, I am done praying and asking and hearing or seeing nothing back; except that things get worse.
     Question is, why would a good and loving God not immediately answer a Faithful man's prayer for work when there is no food in the fridge, kids have clothing needs, electricity is being shut off  and the threat of a foreclosure is looming over their heads? Why wouldn't God in an instant help that man out rather than allow him to suffer and getting deeper and deeper and more and more depressed. Why would God allow a loving single mom, to die of cancer and leave her kids with no man, no dad?  Why? Why? Why? When God doesn't make sense it's easy to start thinking twisted about God. Does God have a sick sense of Humor, as the writer of Depeche Mode wrote in his song, "Blasphemous Rumors?"  As the chorus to the song goes..."and I don't want to start any blasphemous rumors but I think that Gods got a sick sense of humor and when I die, I expect to find him laughing..."  There are Christians out there that would not go so far as this man and write a song about it, but if they would be honest they do have some feelings of resentment and bitterness towards God.
     I am amazed in speaking with parishioners how much they disagree with a lot of the decisions a Pastor makes from week to week and month to month. They could name numerous decisions where they do not believe he ruled justly or fairly, but yet they continue to attend his church and be cordial with him.  What can happen is we can also begin to think we can take this approach with God. There are many Christians still "supposedly" serving God but yet they have issues with God on many things that have happened or even, not happened for that matter.  While I agree that we cannot always agree with our Pastors on every decision they make, we know that man is fallible and he's imperfect and some of his decisions may not always be right and mature Christians accept this and go on to serve God and submit to their Pastors regardless. Howeverwe cannot take this approach with God and think that it works just as well. We cannot think of God as one "who made a bad decision or acted unjustly or unfairly".  We can say with a Godly man, "we will just have to agree to disagree" but we cannot say to God that we disagree. Why? The answer is that we by Faith,  we must always believe that God is perfect and his ways are perfect and his ways are always just. We cannot taint or pervert the character of God, in order to prove ourselves right.  It is okay for a human to say to another human, "you could be wrong and I could be right" but it is quite arrogant for a mortal to tell God that He is wrong. We are speaking about the God who is the Alpha and the Omega. This is the God who is omniscient. He knows what the end will be, He's knows what is best for us, our lives and our future and He died for us, for out best interest, not his.  According to his word, "all His ways are just, all His ways are true".  No matter how ugly the circumstances or how dark the hour or how silent God is we must never lose faith and we must never allow our hearts to become bitter and resentful towards God.
     Ever stop looking for something because you were convinced it was not there? You were so convinced it was not there, that you quit looking and you were willing to get into a heated argument with the individual that told you it was where he said it was. However the worse part is, is that you gave up, you quit looking and decided just to go on without it.  Only to find out that it was there, you just did not look hard enough.  God is there, never stop looking, never stop searching, never stop crying out, He is there. Don't quit looking and decide just to go on without Him. Then what should you do? You should keep calling out, keep believing that He is who He says He is even though all evidence may be contrary (this is Faith, not being foolish as some might say) keeping putting one foot in front of the other and eventually He will appear. It's not an if, it's not a maybe, it's a GUARANTEE.
     Like the Psalmist, you have a choice, get bitter and resentful at God or hold on for dear life and wait for his glorious appearing.