Unsettling thoughts about God…

Either this happens on purpose or it is the way my mind works and God can minister through it, but I tend to move through waves of themes on my journey of faith. Sometimes there are multiple themes going on at the same time that intertwine and other times, I just seem to be hit with one over and over. One of a few different (but related) thoughts I’ve been ruminating on recently has to do with the relationship between our responsibility in our faith and God’s sovereignty.

So, what things got me set off on this path?

  • For one, my church is reading through the whole Bible this year, so we are reading the accounts of repeated sin and hardening of hearts and consequences…
  • Another aspect is of a personal nature…I graduated from my undergraduate degree at TIU in 2002 and I have known several peers who seem to have walked away from their relationship with God and the more it happens, the more I’m unsettled by it.
  • I also picked up a Beth Moore study on When Godly People Do Ungodly Things. Moore discusses this very sensitive and troubling issue of people that were once serving Him who face a period of being seduced by sin.

What are we to do about these things?

  • So far it seems clear to me that we are called to pray (and keep praying) for people in this situation,
  • In as much as the opportunity presents itself, I think we should seek God’s guidance about trying to maintain involvement with some of these friends/acquaintances, and
  • I am convinced it is a sobering call to humility and a reminder that it is God who keeps us from stumbling.

These answers don’t seem like ‘enough’ to me, though and I hope that in time, God will equip me to do and to be more than this to the people in my life who have chosen to let someone or something else be their first priority in life.

I know that some people find their comfort in their interpretations of election, predestination, and the like. Although I have read arguments for and against, I confess that on a practical level, it doesn’t ‘comfort’ me. I’m trying to accept that I may not be able to comprehend what God is doing and that I need to respect that. Even if I can’t be sure whether He hasn’t chosen some to be part of the elect, or that He allows people to choose with their free will and some ultimately don’t choose Him, or that there is an elaborate interplay between God’s plan and the heart and will of people who walk away from Him…I do believe that He is sovereign, He is good all the time, and that He cares for us.

What are your thoughts?

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One Response to “Unsettling thoughts about God…”

  1. Matt Ostercamp Says:

    Watching others fall away (or seem too) is unsettling. I’ve been thinking about our collective responsibility to each other to support and encourage one another in the faith. I think it is good for us to corporately ask how we communicate the gospel to those outside the faith and how we live out the gospel with fellow believers.

    In some tragic cases I’m aware of the church has been more obstacle than aid in trying to follow the narrow path to the Kingdom.

    One specific way this happens is by downplaying the level of commitment involved in being a Christian and leading people to believe that being a Christ follower should be easy and simple when it often is not. I think this leaves people unprepared for the difficult passages of life.


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