Thursday, March 11, 2010

"Who are You?" - March 11, 2010

Good Thursday morning! Winter has returned to the area after a couple days of rain, but it isn't supposed to stay long. Alrighty, book recommendation for this week: Making Rounds with Oscar by David Dosa. Take a trip to your local bookstore or library, and give this little book a try. The story is a good one. The question might be: would God send a cat to act as a kind of death angel? My answer is, "He might!" We don't know all the ways that God can work in our lives. Trying to say that we do know how God works will only make us wrong once again. The cat in the story makes for an interesting investigation, but the book is more about dementia and what happens to the families involved in this terrible disease. Heartbreaking stories to be sure.

The question comes up in the stories, as it surely does in many sufferings in this world; why does God allow this? The choice was made by Adam and Eve, and we and all creation have suffered the effects of that rebellion. We will often have to answer that question in this life. Why does God allow this or that? Of course, we know that the curse we live under is from the rebellion against God when Adam and Eve disobeyed their one restriction in a place called Eden. God doesn't want everyone to suffer from disease and injury; Jesus spent much of his time healing and teaching in his ministry. Compassion for us was then and is now one of Jesus' main characteristics.

Our ultimate ancestors rebelled and God could have left them to die in the wilderness. Think of how much Adam and Eve had to learn very quickly to make it in this fallen world; had God left them alone to face this world we surely wouldn't be here today. Perhaps the curse we see and suffer is used by God to show us how much He cares for us. We turn to God more in our suffering than in any other condition. Having a mother or father ask "who are you?" after knowing them all of your life would certainly count as suffering. I notice that in the stories of dementia, often the suffering parent will recognize a child, but not the spouse who has been with them much longer. Eventually, the person suffering dementia won't recognize anyone and the person is lost to them while still living.

One of our great fears in this life is the loss of control. We might be helped in this if we realize now that God is in control and not each of us. For a quick lesson in that, try to control a cat for a day. No, whether we realize it or not, we aren't in control even now. Trusting in God when a parent or even a long-time friend has completely lost all control is tough, but we are reminded that all things work together for the good of those who love God.

Seize the day in Christ Jesus!


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