1. Graceland.
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    06 Apr '05 22:362 edits
    A recent post made me think about the role of God in a Christian's every day life. The post suggested that Christians need to pray for a sunny day, pray for a salary increase, and pray for a good hair day.

    This made me think, what does God do in my life. Other than one occasion where I prayed and experience an "out of world experience", I can't say I've seen God, heard God, known God was in the same room as me, or could 100% claim that God left me a message and that somehow it may not have been accidental. I am currently awaiting an answer from God on a certain issue, but have yet to receive it.

    So let me tell you about a few things that have happened in my life. Before I do that however, let me try explain why I don't particularly pray for every thing around me. I believe every single thing; from the hairs on my head to my choice in sodas has a purpose. Nothing can be out of place; in deed I support the butterfly theory. Should God believe it is my destiny to die tomorrow, that is my purpose. Should my wife and child be killed in a fire, I will be devastated, but that is a part of God's plan, for they will be in Heaven. Whilst I believe prayer is important, I don't believe in a need to pray for everything. God is in control of my life and my prayers must fall in line with what I believe could be His Will, but most importantly my prayers is my way of talking to God. Yes, He knows my every thought, but when I pray I speak to Him.

    But let me tell you about my experiences with God.

    On my wedding day it was a forecast a rainy day in the South of France. We had often flown to this quaint town to receive our wedding 'lessons' from the priests that was to marry us, and I tell you, every time we went there for a weekend it was perfect weather. Anyway, it was suppose to rain that day, so I prayed to God that if He would (if it was not too much of an inconvenience) prevent it from raining, as much of the wedding reception relied on it not raining on that day. Needless to say we had contingency plans, however we would have liked it not to rain. Make no mistake, I would not be angry, disappointed or worried if it had to rain for God is always good and everything happens for a reason. Anyway, what started as a miserable day, ended up being a mild, yet sunny day, perfect weather for a wedding. The wedding ended officially ended at 3am, at which time to the very minute a glorious and massive thunderstorm broke loose! 3am to the minute. After a long day it was extremely refreshing, but some did get wet.

    As I live in the UK, very few people are Christians, the vast minority. My wife had a difficult pregnancy suffering from hyperemesis, a rare condition where the woman is sick 24/7. My wife started really feeling the strain after about 1 months being pregnant. When she was eventually in the hospital to give birth, I contemplated the possibility of her dying during labour, for this could be God's Will for all I know. Of all the midwives (lady helping with childbirth) we got the most special Christian lady. I had not discussed my faith with her, but she told me to have faith in God, all you need is faith. At the point where my wife was 10 cm dilated, we prepared to start the labour. It took 9 minutes and my wife could scarcely believe it was that easy.

    I recall an incident where I went to university where 17 people died in a freak river boating accident. Heavy rains cause an artificial dam to be formed in one of the tributaries and when it broke, a rush of water hit these people. I know of 2 people that died on that occasion. One guy I went to school with, a Christian that was on his way to India or Pakistan to preach the Gospel, he was to leave in a few months time. He died in this accident; his body was lost for 4 days in the water. If you ask any person that's lost a lot of relatives, they all agree that losing a child is the most difficult, something very harsh. This guys parents had every opportunity to blame God, to lose faith in God, but they didn't. I recall reading his fathers response (a Christian) that they were proud of Him and that they had peace at his passing.

    Recently a friend of mine lost his sister. She was in her early 30's. I recall her always calling me Batman because I told her that I really was Batman, but that I was undercover. Her father and mother were dedicated Christians. She died without any warning. They had the same response as the other couple, they were at peace.

    I tell you these stories because it seems sometimes you wonder about how God operates, where God's miracles are. I don't proclaim my wedding day or my wife's labour a miracle. I believe they are, but I sometimes always find I need to be careful of that. Am I really that important to God that He will change the weather for me? Am I special and any other Christian that has a rainy wedding isn't loved by God as much as I am? No. To me, yes, God stopped the rain because He is Good, His gift to me. He also made sure the lady that helped give birth to our child was a dedicated Christian. The two most important events in my life and God was there for me, not because I deserved it, but because He is Good. But do not take such unusual acts as a testimony of God's love. Take two couples that tragically lose their children and somehow have peace in their lives a week later as a testimony of this. For I tell you, I've seen this happen and for some it takes years to deal with such a tragedy.

    pc
  2. Joined
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    06 Apr '05 22:58
    Originally posted by pcaspian
    A recent post made me think about the role of God in a Christian's every day life. The post suggested that Christians need to pray for a sunny day, pray for a salary increase, and pray for a good hair day.

    This made me think, what does God do in my life. Other than one occasion where I prayed and experience an "out of world experience", I can't say ...[text shortened]... tell you, I've seen this happen and for some it takes years to deal with such a tragedy.

    pc
    A Christian is Praise, Worship, and serve GOD. All things in a believers life has a purpose, and GOD, knows that purpose. Adversity comes into our life, GOD gives the devil to test us. But he never allows a test that we cannot endure or bear.We are taught that this is not really our home, our home is really with CHRIST with GOD in heaven. That is what we look for. We endure trials and tribulations with a spirit of gladness and contentment, know that GOD, has all things under control. We read and study THE WORD OF GOD, for guidedance and comfort.
    The world cannot understand or accept what and why we do as we do. The world was never to. The world can never understand how GOD came to this earth as a man, was cruified on the cross as a man, and was resserrected to sit again on HIS throne. The world cannot understand theat the one that created the world, and all that is on it, saw fit to come and forgive mankind, for the actions that started, in the Garden Of Eden. The world can never understand that love. What a Loving GOD we Believers have.
  3. Joined
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    07 Apr '05 19:02
    PC, I really appreciate you sharing your experiences but I have to ask you this: what does a good Christian say to the man (a good man, a lifelong Christian actively involved in his church) who found his mother and father murdered, his 11-year old sister raped and hung by the neck alone to die in their basement after the parents were butchered to the BTK killer in Kansas City years ago? The man immediately renounced his belief in God and he is actually still very traumatized by the murders to this day, possibly doubly so because he believed God was good.

    I'm not calling into question whether or not God is or is not good, but words fail miserably to offer comfort in light of such savage disregard for the sanctity of human life. I just don't know how this man could be brought to see that a loving God could allow his earthly life become a personal hell with his family slaughtered. If such a thing happened to me and my family, I gaurantee I would not have the grace to accept 'God's Will.' I would be righteously pist with Him.

    This is an extreme case, but I must ask what did God do for that Christian? Can God act benevolently for some and then seemingly turn away cruelly when others need Him?
  4. Graceland.
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    07 Apr '05 20:02
    Originally posted by eagles54
    I'm not calling into question whether or not God is or is not good, but words fail miserably to offer comfort in light of such savage disregard for the sanctity of human life. I just don't know how this man could be brought to see that a loving God could allow his earthly life become a personal hell with his family slaughtered. If such a thing happened to me and my family, I gaurantee I would not have the grace to accept 'God's Will.' I would be righteously pist with Him.

    This is an extreme case, but I must ask what did God do for that Christian? Can God act benevolently for some and then seemingly turn away cruelly when others need Him?


    I recall a sermon by a man who's wife and two daughters were killed in a freak accident. They were smothered by gravel that was being transported by a lorry. He maintained his faith in God and still preaches the Word.

    We are told as Christians that God will never put us in a position of temptation that is too much for us to bear. I believe I am, as you might be, not strong enough in my faith to survive such an ordeal and still maintain my faith in God. I don't believe God would put a person in un unbearable situation, one where he would reject God and not enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Alas, that would in deed be a strange God.

    The annointed King of Israel, Saul, killed himself. He consulted a medium the night before his death, a terrible sin for any Israelite. Christians cannot appreciate good 'fortune' , for that would make a Christian life not difficult, but easy.

    I don't believe a Christian is immune from suffering, from misfortune or pain. They may well suffer through such travesties. We know however that once a 'true' Christian, always a Christian. You cannot 'lose' your faith in God, for the angels rejoice at every man that gives his soul to God. Yes we will face obstacles in our lives, but always God will gives us a way out. While I sincerely feel for this man's pain, I have to place doubt on his Christian status if he is able to reject God. Either we have to assume that God is not good and that He would put His children through tribulations with no way out, or that the man never did embrace God.

    pc
  5. Standard memberDarfius
    The Apologist
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    07 Apr '05 20:03
    Originally posted by eagles54
    PC, I really appreciate you sharing your experiences but I have to ask you this: what does a good Christian say to the man (a good man, a lifelong Christian actively involved in his church) who found his mother and father murdered, his 11-year old sister raped and hung by the neck alone to die in their basement after the parents were butchered to the BTK ki ...[text shortened]... an? Can God act benevolently for some and then seemingly turn away cruelly when others need Him?
    That man should remember that this earthly life is finite, while life with God is eternal.

    He should grieve for the pain they suffered, but ask God for comfort. That comfort comes in the knowledge that he will see his family again.

    The lost do not have that comfort, so they curse the God they never believe in to begin with.
  6. Joined
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    07 Apr '05 20:53
    Originally posted by pcaspian
    I recall a sermon by a man who's wife and two daughters were killed in a freak accident. They were smothered by gravel that was being transported by a lorry. He maintained his faith in God and still preaches the Word.

    We are told as Christians that God will never put us in a position of temptation that is too much for us to bear. I believe I am, as you ...[text shortened]... His children through tribulations with no way out, or that the man never did embrace God.

    pc
    Thank you for your answer, PC.

    Personally, and of course I don't know for certain but I think I could cope with an impersonal accident such as the lorry incident. While undeniably horrible, there is no person to blame, no evil unleashed upon innocents. But to bear such a wretched end to what was once one's good and loving family, well, I would be a liar to say I could let God off the hook for allowing it to happen. Some people are given more than they can bear and it destroys them. It happens every day somewhere. The man in question (I saw it in an interview after the BTK arrest) seemed to be sincere in his previous love for God. It simply would not have profitted him in any way to make up a love for God he did not actually have. It just makes me wonder how God's justice system works.

    I do recall several unrelated cases, all separated by time and distance, where unspeakable horror was visited upon a person's family and the surviving victim had genuine forgiveness toward the perpetrator. I don't recall if they made mention of God's help in their time of tragedy, but I was deeply impressed that any person could forgive horrors of the magnitude they experienced.

    I hope that I could one day have the compassion and wisdom to do the same if it were needed, because blaming God or anything else would never make the situation better. What strength it would require...


  7. Graceland.
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    07 Apr '05 21:55
    Originally posted by eagles54[b[
    (I saw it in an interview after the BTK arrest) seemed to be sincere in his previous love for God. It simply would not have profitted him in any way to make up a love for God he did not actually have. It just makes me wonder how God's justice system works. [/b]

    I've no doubt God has a purpose in every life, for he wills all to be saved. We committed an unforgiveable sin, yet God showed us a way out. As such we don't deserve any mercy at all. I still do not believe God can make a mistake to let one of his own slip through. Perhaps in future the man will understand.

    I guess the best example I have is of Mel Gibson in 'Signs'. He loses his faith for a long time, but regains it in later life.


    I hope that I could one day have the compassion and wisdom to do the same if it were needed, because blaming God or anything else would never make the situation better. What strength it would require...


    I believe we live in a society of our own creation. Even as Christians we don't even have the same set of morals or beliefs. Seems we're so diluted these days.

    Thanks for the chat Eagle.

    pc


    [/b]
  8. Standard memberColetti
    W.P. Extraordinaire
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    07 Apr '05 21:57
    Originally posted by pcaspian
    ... God is in control of my life and my prayers must fall in line with what I believe could be His Will, but most importantly my prayers is my way of talking to God. Yes, He knows my every thought, but when I pray I speak to Him.
    ...pc
    Well said.

    Many Christians see God as a giant slot machine and prayers are the coins. If you plug in enough coins (pray over and over and over), then God will give you what you want.
  9. Joined
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    07 Apr '05 22:36
    Originally posted by eagles54
    PC, I really appreciate you sharing your experiences but I have to ask you this: what does a good Christian say to the man (a good man, a lifelong Christian actively involved in his church) who found his mother and father murdered, his 11-year old sister raped and hung by the neck alone to die in their basement after the parents were butchered to the BTK ki ...[text shortened]... an? Can God act benevolently for some and then seemingly turn away cruelly when others need Him?
    There was a very weealthy man that lost his seven sons,his three daughters,and all of his livestock, basicly became bankrupt in one day. Being a true Believer he said "The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away". A short time later he became ill with sore boils. His wife told him to curse God, and die. He responded "shall we recieve good from God and not recieve evil". JOB chapters 1&2
    We Christians are taught that all things are under GOD'S care. And HE has promised that we will not have to endure anything that we could not handle. If our faith is founded in THE WORD OF GOD, there is nothing that we cannot endure. Our faith in CHRIST is focased on HIM, and not on ourselves or our problems in this life.
    This is not so in those that are unbelievers. Sure there there are those that endure their struggles. But they can not rest in the Hope and Strength of THE RISEN LORD.
  10. Arizona, USA
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    08 Apr '05 01:24
    I enjoy seeing players on both sports teams praying for victory in their game against one another.
  11. Standard membertelerion
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    08 Apr '05 02:28
    Originally posted by blindfaith101
    There was a very weealthy man that lost his seven sons,his three daughters,and all of his livestock, basicly became bankrupt in one day. Being a true Believer he said "The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away". A short time later he became ill with sore boils. His wife told him to curse God, and die. He responded "shall we recieve good from God and ...[text shortened]... e that endure their struggles. But they can not rest in the Hope and Strength of THE RISEN LORD.
    hey blind, what denomination are you? I've never encountered some one who capitalized all the letters of God related words with so stubbornly.

    Ironically, the verse you quoted did not capitalize all the letters of Lord or God.
  12. Joined
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    08 Apr '05 15:562 edits
    Originally posted by pcaspian
    A recent post made me think about the role of God in a Christian's every day life. The post suggested that Christians need to pray for a sunny day, pray for a salary increase, and pray for a good hair day.

    This made me think, what doe ...[text shortened]... pen and for some it takes years to deal with such a tragedy.

    pc
    25 years ago this month, I was a 21 year old man and a two year old Christian when my Mother died of cancer. On her death bed, she wanted me to read Psalm 91 to her. She was a mere 53 years old and her eighth child was only 13, so she did not want to die. None of us wanted her to, of course. I had been praying for a miracle, while one of my older brothers, a non believer and cynical of my naaive faith, scoffed at me.

    The ability to list bad things that happen in the world is one of the few things that everyone on the planet posseses. There is an unending register of awful, cruel and horrendous events in the life of man. Why just the other day I blundered and lost a queen to the unmerciful (and undefeated) sonhouse!

    The fact of life is that Mother's die and Queens get taken. In my case these are the same thing. I miss my Mother still today. But if we have our doctrine in order (The Christian worldview that unerringly explains every facet of our lives), and look to it regularly, then we can live in peace.

    Check this out:
    Since Adam sinned, death was introduced to the world. ...Mom dies.
    Jesus died for Mom's sins. ...Mom is in heaven!
    Mike accepts the offer of salvation offered by Jesus. ...Mike will see Mom again!

    What does God do for the Christian? God relates to the Christian. That is, He has a relationship with him, that He cannot have with someone who refuses Him(the nonChristian). It's that simple!
    From there it's all icing on the cake. When the river floods, or the truck spills or the cancer spreads --things we should expect in a fallen world, I would rather endure those traumas with God's Spirit present with me than without.

    By the way, I do not believe that God controls every thing around us. That would disallow the wonderful gift of free will, and it would make God guilty of a lot of evil choices that people make. But He does have the power to intervene, and the wisdom to know when it is the best idea.
  13. Joined
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    08 Apr '05 19:362 edits
    Originally posted by telerion
    hey blind, what denomination are you? I've never encountered some one who capitalized all the letters of God related words with so stubbornly.

    Ironically, the verse you quoted did not capitalize all the letters of Lord or God.
    I am a Christian. I use CAPS. in my worship of the GOD that I love and serve, in my writings. When I use a Scripture in its entire quote from THE WORD OF GOD, I write it as it is written. And will tell where it is found. When I use a partial quote I will CAP. some words.
  14. Graceland.
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    08 Apr '05 20:08
    Originally posted by chinking58

    By the way, I do not believe that God controls every thing around us. That would disallow the wonderful gift of free will, and it would make God guilty of a lot of evil choices that people make. But He does have the power to intervene, and the wisdom to know when it is the best idea.


    Thanks for that Chink. I appreciated the honesty and openness of your post.


    pc
  15. Joined
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    08 Apr '05 20:24
    Originally posted by chinking58
    But He does have the power to intervene, and the wisdom to know when it is the best idea.
    This is the biggest burr under my saddle when it comes to attributing to God the power of intervention: He seems not to care to intervene when many people, guilty of nothing more than wrong place/wrong time, are destroyed by evildoers both directly and indirectly. What Insight does He have that permits Him to allow such a thing?

    I've been around the block a couple of times and no one has ever made this Truth plain to me yet.
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