Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Wrong Questions

I have been impressed lately at the way we in America respond to many things. I have been amazed to look at the ways we respond to suffering. In these good old United States of America most people view suffering as something to be avoided at all costs. It might be said that people can handle many of our societal concerns as long as they do not personally experience suffering.

When we do face suffering there is a tendency to blame someone else. Usually God bears the brunt of the rants of the people. We ask God how could a loving God let this happen to me? I have asked that very question many times. It is the wrong question. One, it might not be God who caused it to happen, it could be our fault. Two, does it really matter who caused it to happen? Sure we would want to repay evil for evil, and hurt for hurt, but I think there is a book which warns against such course of action. Third we want to know what the plan is to get us out of the suffering as soon as possible.

What would happen if we asked a different question? What if we asked what God is going to teach or show us through the suffering we are in? If we got away from the blame game, and looked to the Master Teacher, I wonder if we would see suffering through different eyes.

Now I know the scriptures teach us to work to alleviate the suffering of the widow and the orphan. To work at doing justice for the oppressed. There is however, no promise or mandate to avoid suffering. In fact is seems as though all those who follow deeply after God have suffering as a part of their journey. What is more, other than a few moments here and there, they do not focus on their suffering, but on what God is doing.

O Lord, I have so much to learn. There are so many ways I could walk more deeply with you. help me.

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