Writer, Church leader, Eccentric Nut, Marketer

I'm Church Leader, Writer, Speaker, Marketer, Kindness Project Founder, Broadcaster and Superhero. But most important I'm a Husband, Father and a worshiper of Jesus.

22 May 2008

How can God be good?

One of my friends who isn't a Christian loves to chat with me about Christianity. Because he knows that I'll give him no BS answers (last time we chatted about "if Christians can be total freaks in the bedroom!) I wanted to share a chat we had this morning about this mornings blog post about Steven Curtis Chapman and how I could say "God is good" in light of the tragedy.

Friend says:
OK, Non-Christian to Christian talk here. I read about the Chapman's daughter on CNN this morning, then saw your blog post -- very sad story. I am not going to challenge you here, but I like these talks because you'll answer How can you guys say that "God is good" when something like this happens? Here we have a guy who's daughter was taken away from him... I don't get it

Dave at Work says:
because god doesn't stop bad things from happening... not with a single person in the bible including his son! The worst humiliation that has ever been, happened to his own kid. Because people and world are not inherently good. Man fell... we sinned... (ate the fruit as it were)... and there is going to be consquence to it.... that's why knowing God, and that there there is a hope for something better (and place where SCC's daughter is going) makes God good. Out of this tragedy, in a year he'll find good things that did happend through the worst of tragedy.

Friend says:
So, basically God is holding a grudge?

Dave at Work says:
Not a grudge... but what would it be like if there were no consequence to our own stupidity? If wrongs were rewarded? It's really quite beautiful actually. Acting rightly and wrongly both have logical consequence but God cares enough to give away his son so one day we no longer have to live in our own mess.

I remember the day we lost a baby. It was a Sunday morning. At church later that night, we sang a song that included the lyric "when the darkness closes in lord, still I will say, blessed be the name of the lord". We sang it... and over the 5 minutes of singing it... we began to really remember eternity. Not just our present feelings. Getting close to a God that understands how it feels is nearly indescribable. Knowing that "everything is gonna be alright" is quite something.

Friend says:
I guess I don't get it, but if your content and happy -- that's a good thing.

Dave at Work says:
ha... how would you prefer god have handled man's "issues"?

Friend says:
Let's back that up a bit, as we assume there is a God. I am not convinced there is, to be honest with you. I respect people's choices and everything, and I don't hate on anyone - I don't like pushy religious people... but anyway, I am not even convinced there is a God.

Dave at Work says:
Yeah i know... just in the context of our discussion. I personally have no idea how people handle situations like Chapman's if they didn't have a hope for a better future. Karma's all well and good, but karma doesn't help Steven Curtis Chapman.

I think we all want to believe that there is something "good". You want to believe that since you're a hard working dude, your business will thrive. We want to believe in something. But all we see is people doing is bad things, hurting others, and jerks succeeding.

The equalizer is Jesus. He's the interuption of the process that man started ourselves down. He covers our screwups and doesn't hold them against us even though we continually suck

Friend says:
So, do you actually believe these are people or is this all metaphoric? I just find it hard to believe that while I am sitting here playing Grand Theft Auto 4, that Jesus is watching over me... you know what I mean?

Dave at Work says:
But I'll bet there have been times where you've felt more like... "there must be something more"... like "god if you're really there" kinda moments. And part of the story of Jesus is believing in something you can't see yet. So yeah... i do believe Jesus was and is a real person. And principally (somewhat metaphorically now but not really) he functions today even though you can't "see" him

Friend says:
Yeah, of course I've thought "There has to be more"... something is out there. I guess my issue is, some people believe it's a guy named Jesus and some people believe it's a giant rat or elephant. Who's to say who is right, ya know?

Dave at Work says:
ha... It think that the Jesus thing is best described by CS Lewis

(From Mere Christianity)
I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: "I'm ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don't accept his claim to be God." That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a good moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic-on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg-or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronising nonsense about His being a great moral teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.


Friend says:
Interesting. Well you keep trying to bring me into the light and I'll keep trying to bring you to the dark side.

Dave at Work says:
I'm in

2 comments:

Eric Bryant said...

Thanks for sharing your insights and your willingness to have the meaningful conversations too many of us seem to miss.

FK said...

Your friend has though questions -- we all do. And for all the tough questions out there, there are so few good answers... I simply wish there were real, practical and "make a difference" answers to these kinds of questions. Most of the answers I've heard to hard questions are either totally whacked or just "feel good but do little to make a real difference" answers (y'know, "pat" answers)... Or maybe I've missed something...

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