Every Monday I try to write an open letter to my three girls with hopes to benefit them and my other readers. I guess its just my way of getting my thoughts out.
’Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,’ says the LORD, who has compassion on you.” Isaiah 54:10 (NIV)
I know this last week really affected you. You have worried about our friends in Haiti and you have rejoiced with us in Dan Woolley’s rescue. I also know that having Dad leave for El Salvador this week was a bit harder than usual. At least it was for me. Saying goodbye is always hard.
But our God is a big God. He is a loving God. People will try to explain God’s thinking in tragedy. I heard a well known preacher explain the earthquake in Haiti as God’s judgement on Haiti. Often when tragedy hits, some will try to explain it through a limited view of God. It brings them to say stupid things. Just this week a friend told me at the death of her son, a relative asked if she had unresolved sin, therefore, God’s judgement was upon her. That is just cruel!
Girls, our God is a big God. He is all knowing, all powerful, all present. If we believe this about God, we know that we can not determine why these things happen. Our God sees things differently than us. Our finite thinking can not explain disaster nor can we insist we have knowledge of God’s thinking or judgement. We are arrogant if we think we can interpret such disaster and why God allows it. I think about Job and all the tragedy of his life. Judgement was not falling upon Job. Job was considered most righteous, yet he endured tremendous hardship. God was with Job. Tony Campolo once said that we all have a theology of God and we are all wrong. Only God is right in His thinking.
What I do know is that God loves us. He loves each and every one of those Haitians, he cares about their suffering. He is the Great Comforter. He is compassionate.
When I was in Haiti I met the most amazing Christ followers. With nothing but the clothes on their backs, these people were gracious. They worshipped and rejoiced in the very breath they breathed. They knew the God of Comfort. They did not think about worldly stuff like Ipods, Starbucks, and mattress pads (we just bought new mattress pads), no, the Haitians thought about Heaven and the day there would be know more suffering. They sang without instruments, they sang passionately to the Savior. I learned so much from being with them. I saw a different view of God through the eyes of the poorest of the poor.
This last week has been hard. I have realized it is easy to live in fear when such events occur. I have come to realize though that I don’t want fear to stop me from doing a greater mission with my life. Girls, you will have to make your own choice on how you let these events affect you. It’s normal to be anxious after such events, but you have a chance to seek God and trust Him. My prayer for you is that events like these lead you to compassion. They lead you to action. My prayer is that you do not let fear keep you from doing what God intends you to do, whether it’s to serve in Haiti one day, or be a teacher at a public high school. I pray you see a big God. A God beyond our human explanation, a personal God who loves you enough to send His son to die for you. This is my prayer on this Monday morning.
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