Thursday, November 21, 2013

God's Will and free will

I'm struggling right now to figure out how my faith relates to... things that happen.

I believe this statement: "God has a plan."

I do not believe this statement:  "Whatever happens is God's will."

I believe this statement:  "I will never leave thee nor forsake thee."

I do not believe this statement:  "God will protect you/him/her/them."

And there are two simple words to explain why I believe this:  Free.  Will.

Don't get me wrong.  I believe that God eventually sees His will done for those who truly wish to see His will done, despite the fact that things happen that are OUT of His will.  But not everything that happens in the world is His will, and not everything that happens in our lives is His will.

And I believe that God is always with His children, but that doesn't mean He prevents anything "bad" or negative from happening to them.

Because He created man with a free will.  So even IF we as Christians were perfect (really, we're not!), we are still surrounded by people who are not Christians.  So even though we as Christians (I hope) truly desire to see God's will done and His children protected, we are still surrounded by people who, not knowing Him, have no such desire.

Humans, Christian or not, are selfish and self-centered.  We want what WE want, and our choices and actions, more often than not, reflect that.

And because none of us is an island nor lives in a bubble, our actions affect those around us.  And since God created man with a free will, He does not put up His big hand and "block" the decisions that we as selfish, self-centered humans make; and as a result, a LOT of things happen that aren't in God's perfect will.

Therefore, the more of these kinds of people you are surrounded by - whether by choice or not - the more likely you are to have things happen in your life that are not God's will, and that you ultimately have absolutely no control over.

So somehow, you - and by "you" I mean "I" - have to figure out how to trust God when you know that there is a very strong possibility that His will may not be done.

And then there's prayer.  Do you pray that His will WILL be done?  Does praying for His will change things?  Make a difference?  Somehow prevent those who would seek after selfishness regardless of the people it hurts, from actually making those decisions with such vast-reaching harmfulness?

I don't know.  I don't have answers.

I do have God, and I have prayers for trust and peace, and I have a strong faith in Him that I need to hold on to, even - no especially - when it seems like the hardest thing to do.