Why?

I can’t stop the rain
From falling down on you again
I can’t stop the rain
But I will hold you till it goes away

-Third Day, When the Rain Comes

This morning I was reading the news on the Internet as I normally do. The news is so full of negativity, but I look at it at least once a day to stay up to date. I will be honest that I don’t read every article. In many cases I just read the headline to know what is going on in the world. Then I read one of two articles that I am really interested in, and I usually don’t read the whole article. I think many people do the same. Hopefully you are not doing that with my blog though.

This morning, my jaw dropped as I read this headline.

Fire in Rural Pa. Farmhouse kills 7 kids.

The full article is here:

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/03/09/trooper-rural-pa-farmhouse-kills-7-kids/

Stories like these tear at my heart. How can something like this happen? Apparently, the fire took place in a rural area in Pennsylvania. The mother was milking cows, and the father had gone into town. One of the kids, a 3 year old, smelled smoke and ran to tell her mother. By the time the mother ran to get the father, the house was engulfed in flames and smoke. The 7 children died of smoke inhalation.

Every once in a while, a story like this can make one question this experiment called life. Why does God allow things like this to happen? What plan did God have for these children that could possibly include a death like this? Why would God put these parents through this horror? Why would God bring children into this world, only to let them perish in such a horrific way?

I don’t know. I don’t think any of us really do.

A few years ago, I questioned God’s purpose in my life. Day after day of fighting with doctors and Insurance companies had broken me. I was going through the motions. I was no longer participating in life. I was drifting. Every day was like a blur – work, hospital, sleep. My first wife was dying slowly day by day, and I felt numb. Shortly after her death, I looked back at the last 3 years of her life, and I actually had no idea how I made it. How did I survive day by day without going insane? It took me a good 3 years after her death to figure that out.

God.

He was carrying me. I made it because of His will. As hard as it was for me, there was a purpose. Today, I am closer to God, and I owe that in no small way to my first wife, and what we went through together. Then God put another woman in my path, just the right one to bring me even closer to Him. Today, my current wife keeps me on that path. She is the perfect person to stand by me as we take on a new path together. Together we walk into the future with God in our hearts.

So what is the purpose of this horrific event in Pennsylvania? Again, I don’t know. Maybe those parents will pray for their children together, which will bring them closer to God. Maybe the purpose of those children in this world was meant to teach us all something. Maybe we should all be reminded how precious human life is, and yet how fragile it is. I do know that God’s love for those children is unquestionable, and He has a plan for them.

We are here in this world for a blip of time. Life is too short for missed opportunities. I think God reminds of this over and over, and these events should be a reminder to all of us to take every opportunity we have.

Tell your kids you love them today.

Tell your mom and dad how much you appreciate them. To my mom and dad – thank you!

If you haven’t done so today, get on your knees and pray. Ask God for forgiveness, and surrender to His will.

What are you doing with your blip of time?

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10 thoughts on “Why?

  1. An incident like this makes you question life because of the paradigm of “life” that you have created for yourself. If you have an assumption that everything is controlled by an all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-good being then that means that all events must have a reason for occurring that ultimately is good even if they cause incredible suffering. So I understand your dismay at why an all-good God would allow 7 innocent kids to roast to death in a fire. And no reason is really sufficient.

    No reason can be sufficient because the paradigm itself makes no sense. An all-good God cannot create suffering. If you had set those kids on fire or allowed the fire to occur you would be considered an evil person. Yet if God creates it or allows it to happen then he is all-good. If there was any way to prevent that fire you would have. Which means that already your sense of morality and empathy for others is greater than the God you say allowed this to occur. I would worship someone who would not allow this fire to occur before I would any God that would because he had a “reason” for it.

    PS Lemme guess, this comment has no relevancy to your blog post? 😉

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    • mdginzo:

      I am sorry for whatever happened in your life that caused you to have such a negative viewpoint on Christianity and God. Unfortunately I cannot change that. Your posts do show your anger and resentment. Maybe I am wrong and this is just your writing style. If someone or something caused you to turn away from God or Christianity, I am sorry for that. All I can hope is that one day you allow Him to enter your life and make a change in you like He has for me.

      I will be praying…

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  2. LOL I have no anger or resentment. In fact, any that I did have I learned to let go of as I shed my belief in supernatural beings. If I have any beliefs they are more Buddhist than anything else. if I believed that suffering was caused or even allowed to be caused by some all-powerful being then I would have great anger and resentment.

    Instead, I have learned that things occur out of natural causes and there is nothing that I or any being can do about it. I would like to know which words or phrases in my writing indicate “anger or resentment” to you, for I have none. My beliefs or lack thereof have been very liberating for me and relieved me of worry, stress and fear of most things.

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    • Glad to hear it.

      You are entitled to your point of view.

      The main part of Christianity is submitting yourself to the will of God. We live in a fallen, decaying world, and I believe with every ounce of my being, that those “natural causes” you speak of come from that Creator. I would never assume that any natural disaster was created by God, as that would assume a knowledge of God’s will that I don’t have. But that He has the power to create or allow them, I have no doubt. I suppose one who doesn’t believe in a greater existence after this life can find it hard to understand. If one knows God exists, and surrenders to his will, then you know that any trial and tribulation in this world is only temporary, just as our life on this earth is temporary. I have no problem dealing with a God that allows disasters if I have surrendered to his will and am assured of salvation.

      Jesus died for my sins, and in acknowledgment and acceptance of that fact, I have earned the greatest freedom anyone can have. There is no freedom granted by man greater than the freedom from sin granted by our Savior.

      If you have no anger and resentment, that is good. My gut tells me that believing this is all there is – if that is what you believe – can actually be quite scary. I have no way of knowing what is in your head or heart, so I make no assumptions about you.

      Peace….and again…I will be praying for you.

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    • Thanks for your comments, mdginzo.

      I agree with you that it is a scary world. Thankfully, the salvation we receive from Jesus Christ’s ultimate sacrifice gives us an eternal life beyond this scary world.

      That is something I see nothing wrong with.

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  3. “Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear” – Thomas Jefferson

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    • Good one! I like this one too:

      “A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.”
      –C. S. Lewis

      Btw…have you ever read Habakkuk?

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  4. Although Lewis is a very intelligent man, that quote means nothing more than if I replaced the word “God” with “banana” because I happen to worship bananas. I quoted Jefferson above because it related to your implication that you worship God because the world is scary and such worship brings you comfort. Jefferson’s quote (from a letter to his nephew) meant that if there is a God that He would more appreciate a reasoned, well-thought out approach to the question of his existence rather than fear of his non-existence.

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    • Of course the quote means nothing to you. I expected that. I don’t believe my article stated or implied that I worship God because the world is scary. I worship God because He created me, and granted me salvation. Worship brings me comfort because of a closer relationship to God, in a very similar way that a son’s relationship with his father brings comfort. There is nothing wrong with questioning. That is why I mentioned Habakkuk, who also questioned God. It is ok to question why things happen in the world. It was precisely what Habbakkuk did, and God answered.

      I can tell you that I wish most Christians were as committed to God as you are of proving He doesn’t exist. 🙂

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