Archive for January 12th, 2007

(Not the) Master of the Universe

Friday, January 12th, 2007

Today’s scripture: Job 28:20-28 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two.

My thoughts (Kay Olry):

“If God is in control, why is the world such a mess?”
“Why do people suffer?”
“Why is life so hard?”
“Why did Jesus have to die on a cross if He’s God? Wasn’t there another (easier) way?”
“Is that what Christianity is about? I don’t want anything to do with it!”
“What is the meaning of life? If there’s a God, why hasn’t God made it clear what we’re here for?”

Have you ever been in a conversation with a non-Christian, and had them throw questions like these at you? Do you have any idea how to answer them? The questions have been asked by many of us at one time or another. They’re honest questions, which deserve honest answers.

I used to love arguing with Christians about all of them, back when I was an agnostic and borderline atheist. I look back now and am astonished to think that I was so arrogant. It used to frustrate me even more when the response became the same refrain: “Because it’s in the Bible.” It always seemed like I needed to leave my intellect at the door.

Luckily, I’ve come a long way from the days when I thought I knew everything. In fact, it was when I admitted that I didn’t know everything that God was able to begin working in my life.

I came to realize that just because I didn’t have good answers to the questions didn’t mean that God didn’t. Just because some Christians couldn’t answer the questions didn’t mean that there weren’t any answers.

Once I realized that the Creator who made the earth, moon, and stars had to be much greater than I could imagine or comprehend, I became much more humble. I also realized that my way wasn’t working anymore. So, I began at the beginning and asked myself, “Who is this Jesus guy I’ve heard about my whole life?” I’d heard many other people tell me who He was, but I needed to find out for myself.

What changed things for me was this — Jesus Christ is the only God I ever prayed to that answered. He reached down in my brokenness, and welcomed me back, even though I didn’t deserve it.

Later on, I came to realize that there are reasonably good answers for all of the questions I once had. Sometimes, we really do just need to have faith when we don’t know the answer. The difference now is that I trust that just because I don’t know the answer, doesn’t mean there isn’t one. I have faith that God knows.

What a relief! It’s nice to know that the universe doesn’t depend on me.

Here’s a song that fits with today’s thoughts: Awesome God by Michael W. Smith.

Thought for the day: Are you willing to let God be God, and trust that everything is under control?

Today, let’s join together in prayer for: the students in the various Discipleship Classes, which begin January 14.

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. Use the item above as a starting point, or consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10
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