Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Are you really there, God, or are you a figment of my imagination?

It's kind of scary to admit it, but every now and then I wonder if God is real.  I wonder if the conversations I have with him are really conversations with myself.  Some people say that's what is happening.  For those people, God and the universe and awareness of what is happening around us are pretty much the same thing.

I believe in a God who is all-powerful, who is sovereign, who sets the rules for life.  He can do that because, after all, he created the world.  It's hard to believe that this omnipotent God can love me or even know who I am.  I mean, why would he?  I'm kind of messed up.

But then there's Jesus who is the exact image of the God.  If we've "seen" Jesus, we've seen God.  He does all kinds of amazing things, heals the blind, removes leprosy, casts out demons. Not once in the Gospels do we see Jesus refusing to heal someone.

And that makes it kind of difficult today when we ask and ask for healing or for God's intervention in a difficult situation, but it doesn't appear that God's going to do anything.

It's kind of weird to stand to the side, to be ill, and to watch other people healed.  Or to watch other people's lives being blessed by unexpected checks in the mailbox, happy marriages, children, grandchildren, whatever.  Why doesn't God answer everyone's prayers?

That's part of what makes me question whether or not God is there.  I mean, part of me always knows he is, part of me might be annoyed with him, and part of me just wonders.  It's normal to walk through these kinds of doubts, I think.  As we walk through these doubts, God strengthens our faith and helps us know him better.

One of my favorite authors, Frank Viola, addresses these kinds of questions in his blog titled, "The Forgotten Beatitude,"  in which he quotes Matthew 11:6, when Jesus says, "Blessed is the person who is not offended by me."

If you've ever wondered what God's doing, check this out.
Viola closes by quoting Romans 11, "Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!” (Rom. 11:33)."

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