Out From Under the Umbrella

playing in the rain

God is in Control

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I’ve refrained, until now, from posting anything on this subject. Mostly because I wanted to gather my thoughts and remain coherent and rational, not emotional.  It is almost impossible to do so.

The first three verses of Psalms 46 say:

 God is our refuge and strength,
    a very present help in trouble.
 Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
    though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
 though its waters roar and foam,
   though the mountains tremble at its swelling.
                                                                    Selah      

 For years I only listened to Christian radio.  My favorite was American Family Radio inspirational music.  This is one of my favorite songs:

God is in Control
This is no time for fear
This is a time for faith and determination
Don’t lose the vision here
Carried away by emotion
Hold on to all that you hide in your heart
There is one thing that has always been true
It holds the world together

God is in control
We believe that His children will not be forsaken
God is in control
We will choose to remember and never be shaken
There is no power above or beside Him, we know
God is in control, oh God is in control

History marches on
There is a bottom line drawn across the ages
Culture can make its plan
Oh, but the line never changes
No matter how the deception may fly
There is one thing that has always been true
It will be true forever

He has never let you down
Why start to worry now?
He is still the Lord of all we see
And He is still the loving Father
Watching over you and me

watching over you…watching over me..
watching over every thing..
watching over you..watching over me..
every little sparrow..every little thing…

I find myself questioning the lyrics of this song.  Questioning it to the very core of my being.  If someone else were in charge we would be demanding answers.  Just look at the demands placed on the President of the United States.  This isn’t a political commentary.  But just look at how he’s denigrated for playing golf on the weekend while there is turmoil and chaos across the globe.  He was questioned for making NCAA basketball picks at a time when the people feel he should be more serious.  Now he’s being questioned for taking a diplomatic trip to South America.  He is seen as weak in leadership because he drug his feet on the “no-fly” zone in Libya.  We demand to know. No, we have a right to know. Where does the buck stop?  Who is in control?  We expect our leader to act swiftly and decisively.

And yet, somehow, some way our supposed ultimate leader gets a free pass.  There is unrest in the Middle East.  There has been an earthquake and tsunami in the Far East.  There have been earthquakes and tsunamis in our not-too-distant past.  Where is our leader?  He is invisible.  Is he taking an extended vacation?  Is he playing golf?  Do we not expect him to be in control?  Do we not expect him to act swiftly and decisively?  The Bible tells us we can expect him to do that and more.  Yet it appears he is missing in action.

If God is in control,  if he’s the manager of all of this he’s doing a terrible job.  And he doesn’t even have to answer for it.  Because anything good that happens is credited to him and anything bad that happens is because of sinful man.  We all are expected to have accountability, but even questioning him produces indignation.  God is good, loving, benevolent and kind.  Do not fear, God is in control. 

And He is still the loving Father
Watching over you and me

watching over you…watching over me..
watching over every thing..
watching over you..watching over me..
every little sparrow..every little thing…

Try telling that to these sparrows:

 

Somehow that just doesn’t seem like a very comforting thought.  No, the logical conclusion might just be that he’s absent, that there is no God.  It’s more comforting to know that we have each other, that we can pull together in times of crisis, and we have a real shoulder to lean on, even if no one is in control.
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5 thoughts on “God is in Control

  1. Don't know what else to say other than that I agree.This was one of the things that lead to my de conversion from Christianity. It's unfathomable that a God who loves us and who had the power to prevent/ heal suffering would stand by and do nothing. I don't remember the exact wording of it any longer but I once found a quote that said that the opposite of love is indifference or apathy, not hate. That seems like it may apply here.

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  2. Don't you know that His ways are not our ways? The almighty Creator of the Machiavellian principle of "the ends justify the means" knows exactly why these people are suffering, and He assures us it's all going to work out for the best!Besides, God is taking action. He is in every volunteer and every donor. The faith of God does move mountains. You've just got to pick up a shovel, that's all. ;-/Seriously though, good post!

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  3. It's a completely non-testable theory… that God is in control. Every positive and negative event in nature can be interpreted in God's favor.Sunny day? Thanks you God.Stormy day? We needed the rain.Tsunami? God wanted us to depend more on him.Blizzard? God said the seasons would never end.Earthquake? It's a fallen world. Nature itself groans to be released from it's bondage to decay.Aids? God's judgement on sinful man.Flood? Isn't it great that he didn't flood the WHOLE earth, which he promised he wouldn't do again.Massacre? Satan inspired it. Although God did not cause it, he permitted it.It will all make sense when we get to heaven. yada yada yadaMultmann, darling theologian of the Emergent Church, makes a case for a weak God. In other words, God is there, he cares, he suffers with us, but does not prevent or relieve the suffering. This view grew out of his experience in Nazi Germany. If I remember right, that was premise of the book, "When bad things happen to good people." In any case, it ends up being pretty similar to there not being a God at all.

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  4. ei,That is exactly my point. Every event, no matter good or bad, is twisted to God's favor. All bad things in a round about way are attributed to sinful man. All good things are gifts from God.

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  5. It's a completely non-testable theory… that God is in control. Every positive and negative event in nature can be interpreted in God's favor.Sunny day? Thanks you God.Stormy day? We needed the rain.Tsunami? God wanted us to depend more on him.Blizzard? God said the seasons would never end.Earthquake? It's a fallen world. Nature itself groans to be released from it's bondage to decay.Aids? God's judgement on sinful man.Flood? Isn't it great that he didn't flood the WHOLE earth, which he promised he wouldn't do again.Massacre? Satan inspired it. Although God did not cause it, he permitted it.It will all make sense when we get to heaven. yada yada yadaMultmann, darling theologian of the Emergent Church, makes a case for a weak God. In other words, God is there, he cares, he suffers with us, but does not prevent or relieve the suffering. This view grew out of his experience in Nazi Germany. If I remember right, that was premise of the book, "When bad things happen to good people." In any case, it ends up being pretty similar to there not being a God at all.

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