Last week, I made this comment on Lori’s post. ”I think a lot of people fail to make the connection that a good, benevolent God doesn’t mean that you will always have peace, joy and ever blessed thing you want. You are, after all, living among flawed humans.”
Lori responded, “You need to write more about what you just said. People really don’t get it!”
The fact of the matter is that this is a really tricky topic because it comes back to free will. Free will, the ability to make our own decisions, is both a blessing and a curse.
It’s easy enough to see why it’s a blessing, because it means we get to make our own decisions. We have choices. We aren’t just puppets in a cosmic play. We are free.
But with freedom comes responsibility and it is the responsibility we would often happily do without. We want the freedom (fries or onion rings) but we don’t want the responsibility (high cholesterol, obesity, and heart disease). As if that wasn’t enough, we don’t just make decisions that harm us. We make decisions that harm other people. We go astray.
Recently, I lead the lesson for our women’s circle at Florissant Presbyterian Church. This year we are studying from Dispatches to God’s Household: The General Epistles by Nancy Benson-Nicol. In the lesson that I taught on elders, she refers to people as God’s sheep, his flock.
Most of us, myself included, resent being compared to sheep. After all, sheep are not exactly known for their intelligence or their ability to keep themselves out of trouble.
Hmm. Maybe when you put it like that it isn’t such a bad comparison. We constantly put ourselves in harms way. Time and time again, we put others in harms way. We know what God wants; he has told us to love each other time and time again.
God tells us what He wants but he also gave us free will. The choices that we make are ours. Its about time we learned to accept the responsibility, and the blame, that comes with the freedom.