Wednesday, January 2, 2008

God and scary things

Yesterday I was reading CNN online, and I saw that a 19 year old had gone into a mall in Omaha, Nebraska and shot 8 people before killing himself. This happened on 12-5-07, but I isolate myself, so I had not heard of it.

I have a nephew at the University of Nebraska, Omaha.

At our local mall, people occasionally jump off the top floors down into the atrium below, a very long fall in an open area surrounded by glass elevators. I believe that they usually die when they do this. But nobody has unleashed gunfire on the general public yet.

Mall shootings, school shootings, bridge collapses (in Minneapolis, my hometown city), churches being burned, Hurricane Katrina that wiped out New Orleans. How can a person dare go out of her house in a world like this?

Honestly, I don't know how atheists deal with it. I find my only comfort in the sovereignty of God. God has appointed my days, and I will die on the day He ordained for me to die. It might be today; it might be 50 years from now. He has a purpose and plan for my life, and when it is complete, He will take me home... so I don't have to worry. My life is in His hands. He is in control and He promises to work all things for good for those who love Him and have been called according to His purpose.

I do not put confidence in the idea that God will save me from physical harm because I am His child. I may well experience physical harm. But no matter what happens, my soul is safe. He will protect my soul. This world is not my home; I need to remember that. I am walking each step of each day here on my way to a perfect place where I will be fully restored to unhindered fellowship with God. The events of this world are tests and trials to prove our faith and to demonstrate both God's power and His love to the world. It is not about whether I get cancer or not, whether I am in a car accident or not, whether I am raped or not. It is about how I might respond to any or all of those situations for the glory of God.

"My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be." (Psalm 139:15-16)

"Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows." (Luke 12:6-7)

" 'No weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and this is their vindication from me,' declares the Lord." (Isaiah 54:17)

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