Tension

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by Alex Petric

“But you see, David was the first blues singer. As well as praising, he was there shouting at God—you know: ‘Where are you when we need you?’ … ‘We’re surrounded.’ … ‘Your people are starving.’ … ‘Are you deaf?’ That type of thing. He’d be wailing, this militant mind, this poet musician with enough faith to believe he had a deal with God … believed it enough to get angry when it looked like He wasn’t coming through.” – Bono

Many times, I hear people who don’t believe in God, complain about how God has never done anything for them, and so they can’t accept Him as existing. I feel the problem in their approach is that they expect everything to be perfect. A relationship with God is comparable to the relationships we keep with other people. If we expect an earthly relationship to not have any fights or arguments, then we will abandon it the second that one appears. Our experience with God works in the same way: sometimes problems arise, and it’s understandable when we become angry with God. This is not necessarily a bad thing, as long as, in the end, our struggles with God bring us to an even deeper understanding of Him. We shouldn’t be afraid to let God know how we feel.

There is another side to this as well: we can’t always expect things to be exhilarating either. I have had many magnificent, eye-opening moments in my life where I felt very close to God. I would love to always have the same sense of wonder that I had at these moments, but things like that don’t last, and it’s probably a good thing they don’t. If they did, then the feeling would become commonplace and get old. Sometimes it can be nice to enjoy the silence, breathe, and be content with everyday life, instead of always longing for something to amaze us. In a relationship between two people, there will be many exciting moments for both, but the bond cannot be condensed down to just these exciting moments. Ordinary life experiences are just as important.

When our relationship with God is happy, joyful, and peaceful, it is a great thing, but things cannot always be this way. There will be struggles and there will be quiet times, but these help us grow in faith and understanding.

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One response »

  1. I like this analogy of our relationship with God being like a relationship with a person. You could add to it that you likely wouldn’t have a very good relationship with a friend if you never spent time with them, never stopped to listen to them, and didn’t respect their opinion. Same with God; if we aren’t taking time daily to spend time with Him in prayer, listen to what He wants to tell us, and follow what He has taught us is right, then it would be no big surprise to feel that God ‘doesn’t do anything for us’.

    Thanks for the insight Alex.

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