No. You Can’t Have It Your Way.

By Edward Thal

People who scarcely give God a second thought as they sleepwalk through life are quick to blame God when they suffer unexpected personal loss. Traumatic circumstances drive away the fog of self-absorption and demand immediate answers.

“Why is this happening to me?”

“What have I done to deserve this?”

“Why is God so cruel and uncaring?”

The question never asked is, “Why blame God?”

A motorist who ignores a large sign warning that the road ahead is unsafe would be thought strange for blaming the sign in the event of an accident. God is that large “sign” in every human heart, yet many do not think it strange to blame God for their misfortunes in life when they ignore Him.

This is what the Bible has to say on the subject:

That which may be known of God is manifest in them, for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse. Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Romans 1:19-21

 If God-deniers were honest (although the very nature of their attitude towards God proves they are not), they would admit that their core motivation is not so much a rejection of God as it is a refusal to surrender control of their lives to God. They will accept God only on their terms.

Alas, mere humans cannot prescribe the basis of a relationship with God. We can’t come half way and we cannot bring along our baggage of prejudice and self-righteousness and personal accomplishment and bitterness and arrogance and ego. We can only approach God on His terms, empty-handed, willing to admit that we have been wrong, that something in us is broken, and that we need His help. In short, we must be willing to be wholly submissive to Him and to His way, wherever and however it may lead.

He is, after all, God. And He owes us nothing.

Yet, God loves us. He has demonstrated the brilliance and breadth and depth of His love for us in Jesus Christ. (That is, in Christ alone, not through the foolishness of religion that would make Christ in our image).  The incarnation of our Creator and His death and resurrection on our behalf is a sublime mystery that transforms us and makes us fit for heaven if we want Him badly enough. His way.