This world can be really shitty. Horrible, awful things happen on a daily basis: natural disasters, violence, abuse, viral epidemics… you name it. When these things happen we automatically look for someone to blame. Sometimes it’s a politician, sometimes someone that looks different than us, or a lot of the time we blame the only “person” that can’t defend themself, and that’s God. For people who don’t believe or are not tied to a certain religion a common reason is “I can’t believe in a God who would let such bad things happen to people” and for people who do believe that kind of doubt can shake our faith to the core. I mean let’s face it, we basically treat God like a punching bag… We pray when times are hard and we ask for healing and forgiveness and justice and mercy, but how often do we give thanks? How often do we simply use prayer just to praise? I know that I don’t do it enough, that’s for sure. When the unthinkable happens we rarely look inward for someone to blame or for a reason behind the tragedy, most of the time we look up and we ask “Why me?” “Why us?” “Why them?”
I sometimes think that we picture God as this guy sitting in a room full of tv screens, zoomed in on our lives, and in front of him (or her) is a control panel and as time passes they click certain buttons and good or bad things happen. Like maybe six months ago “control panel God” said to himself “you know, I think its time for Ebola to pop back up in west Africa” and poof, the button was pushed and that young boy came back to his village only to die two days later and infect his entire family in the process. So, think of God that way if you like, but I just can’t. I’m cutting God some slack, trying to control everything that happens in this world would be like trying to herd 6 billion cats and as all powerful as God might be, I’m sorry, but you try getting two cats to do what you want them to do and let me know how it goes.
I’m not saying that I don’t believe in divine intervention, I think God shows up at certain times (both good and bad) and I think there are reasons behind everything. But what I don’t believe is that my God is a vengeful God, or a God who sees horrible things happen and sits back and just watches. No, God acts, he acts through us. He puts people on this earth with knowledge and passion and abilities to get us through whatever shit storm we are currently in. I’d say his most famous addition to the human race was this crazy street preacher by the name of Jesus… I mean, am I right??
God never promised us perfection, God never tells us it will be easy. But you know what God did do? God gave us a pretty incredible planet, and we were given each other. God gave us a choice to either do the best we could or sit back and blame “him” for all the crap. We are the ones that have polluted our planet, and discriminated against each other, and allowed people to go hungry and for children to die. God did not do that, we did. So, guess who has to fix it? WE DO! It won’t be easy, it will be messy, and it will not go the way we want it to all the time. But, in my opinion we can’t look at God as someone to blame anymore. When we turn our faces upward to talk to God we can't demand answers anymore, no more "why's" what we need to do is pray for direction and guidance. Because God has put us in the drivers seat of this train, which is terrifying, but a long time ago (with the help of that crazy street preacher) he laid down the tracks for us.