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Saturday
February 22nd, 2020
L&T Opinions Page

gary damronMY PERSPECTIVE, Gary Damron

 

A beautiful young teenage girl from a faithful family died this week. I woke the morning after with the conviction that God didn’t want this to happen. 

An elderly person who is longing to die holds on and wonders why. God allows each occurrence, because there are consequences, circumstances. That’s just the way it is. 

Wouldn’t it be interesting if, when I get to heaven and ask him why, God gives me a scientific answer and says it’s all common sense (it’s reasonable). Bodies are not indestructible; they are complicated. Things do go wrong; but a strong heart and will to live may overcome the seemingly inevitable. 

I do believe God has the ability to intercede and I have seen Him work miracles. Sometimes he has intervened as a demonstration of who he is, or to give us a second chance, or when we have learned our lesson, or gained understanding, or seen the light.  But most of the time things play out according to the way his world and we are created and function. Sometimes the lesson is that this is life, and that’s the way it works.

We live in a world that wants to alleviate all consequences, avoid all suffering, but that will never happen this side of heaven. What can happen while we’re on earth is that we can find the ever-abiding presence of God and the hope of eternity to get us through the reality of this side. 

I am encouraged to pray about everything, the desires of my heart. But ultimately, I must respond to my own prayers in faith, accepting that God’s ways and his will are best. My prayers are actually for myself and everyone else to come to a place of faith. In those ways, I can accept the circumstances and allow God’s presence to be felt so he can guide my response to the situation.

The ultimate end is eternal life. That is why Paul wrote that all things work for good for those who love God and are called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28).

The rain falls on the just and the unjust. So does the sunshine. Justice and mercy are his eternal purposes, and we can rest in assurance that they will come to pass. 

Many believe God is absolute and makes everything happen. But at the same time folks pray like they have the power to change God’s mind when they don’t like their circumstances. Is there not an inconsistency in that? Should we not instead be praying for God’s direction in how to deal with the reality of the situation. In that way he can use those who love him (including our circumstances) to be a part of working all things for good. 

In the midst of trial, Lord, help me to redeem the time so that souls might be redeemed. When I lose a loved one, help me to honor the memory by finding others to love. If I’m feeling unlovable or unloved, help me to know God loves me and there are others around me who need to know he loves them too. Help me to remember I have a part in working all things for good - includes accepting and sharing his love and purpose. Simply put, I can share Jesus. After all, he is eternal life (John 17:3)

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