This is the final blog in a six-part series that’s looking at the question: Where’s God when Life’s so Hard? This topic is a follow-on from Chapter 2: The Rescue Plan in my second book Mysterious? …Expect the Unexpected where I questioned why my Creator had allowed my life story to included some pretty scary things. As a way of drawing my thoughts to a close, I thought I might tell you a story about the note left behind by our only son.
Just after his 17th birthday, our son Michael had the opportunity to be a deckhand for 6 months aboard one of the GBA Ships. It was the last tour of service for the Logos II before she was sold. When the ship was packed down, the director found the following letter. It had been left pinned to the staff notice board when our Michael left the ship:
These past 6 months have been a big lesson for me, it will take forever to share all that I’ve learnt but I’ll tell you one of them which will be with me the rest of my life and will help me teach others back home in what the true meaning of a relationship with Christ is. A relationship with Christ does not come from the Bible; does not come from prayer; does not come from church – but comes from seeing God working in the lives of people across the globe, and it only has to be a small group of individuals. Of course, prayer, bible and church helps you with your walk with God, but to start your walk with God you gotta have faith that God will be with you every step of the way. Just to see what people turn into when they follow the Lord and what they can accomplish, is enough. I pray that God will continue to bless you all and remember that God will never take you through something you can’t handle.
What Mike was saying here is that while prayer, bible reading and attending church are all most certainly helpful, the core issue at the bottom of everything we face, is trust.
A year after Mikey wrote this, we were lowering his body in the grave. Now those of us left alive to carry on living, are left to choose to have faith in God’s 100 per cent good nature — or not: faith in His Word; faith in His decision making processes; faith in His all-knowing nature, and His ability to give us the best. Most especially, this includes a faith that He will never take us through something we can’t handle.[a]
I don’t know why I was given the childhood I had, nor the life I’ve had since. I don’t know why at times God seems so far away. I don’t know why God has set a time and a date so far into the future that it allows evil things to continue to go on all around us today. But no matter how good or how awful this life here on planet earth is, it’s just the inception of a new creation — ready for things to come.
Life on planet earth is like an Introduction to the story. It tells how our creation and re-creation as Children born again of the Spirit of God came about. How we were first found in the muddy rivers of this life, half buried by suffocating dirt and without recognisable value. How the author of the Dreamtime and Father of Creation has reached down with a rescue plan in His Word: we’re saved through faith. In all my travels through the 80 countries I’ve visited, I haven’t yet found anything remotely like the Creator God’s Plan, in the extent of His promises.
So whether you’re a 17th Century indigenous Australian, sitting in tranquillity in the only remaining utopia on earth. Yet somehow feeling you’re excluded, separated, exiled and not sure why. Or, you’re a white British person sitting in a worship meeting and praying: “…I have sinned against You and against my fellow man, in thought and word and deed; through negligence, through weakness, through my own deliberate fault. I am truly sorry and repent of all my sins…” The solution that will bring us all back to that ‘promised land’, is reconnecting with the One who Fathered Forgiveness.
No matter who we can legitimately blame for our turmoil filled life. Or who we think is at fault for life being so hard. We all have played our part. Like sheep, we have all gone astray. Each one of us have turned to his/her own way. We can’t be like Adam who blamed his wife. We can’t be like Eve who blamed the snake. Each of us needs to take ownership for where we’re at today, and how our future can now be changed, in light of the Maker’s Word.
“…behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed is he who heeds the words of the prophecy of this book.…Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and the one who is filthy, still be filthy; and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and the one who is holy, still keep himself holy.” “…My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done.” [b]
[a] Deuteronomy 31:6,8; Psalms 66:12; Isaiah 43:2
[b] Revelation 22:7,8,11&12