Time for Five Minute Friday, hosted by the illustrious and hardworking Kate Motaung. It's a five-minute writing exercise, based on a keyword, which this week happens to be...
People ask me, sometimes, <"Aren't you really upset that you're so sick, and that you're dying? Aren't you upset at the unfairness of it all?"
When I say No, they get puzzled...and sometimes they get mad.
Recently I was counting my blessings, and said, "Look, I've got a nice place to sit, a good book to read, a cold Monster Drink, and seven dogs within ten feet of me. What more could I ask?"
The reply I got was, "You could ask for good health, and the energy to do thie things you used to do, and..."
You get the drift. This individual was mad at me. I'm still trying to figure out the logic.
But the thing is, I'm not mad, or disappointed, or petulant at how unfair it is...or wondering if maybe I didn't do enough to placate God (there are some folks I might have offered as human sacrifices...hmmm...there's a thought...)
It's all about free will.
I am a Christian, and I believe that God created us for a purpose...He made us to share eternity with Him. Why? Maybe he got lonely. I don't know, but rest assured...I will ask.
Anyway, part and parcel of being able to become fit companions for the Almighty is that we choose is presence ourselves, and do do that...we have to have free will.
Not only that, we have to live in a world that operates on the basis of a kind of de facto freewill of its own...hence earthquakes and malaria and tsunamis and...cancer. I still feel superstitious about saying that out loud.
We're exposed to a World of Hurt, and how we react to it is a gauge of just how we exercise our free will.
Could God rescue me, cure me? Sure, but to do that would be to negate the whole point of the exercise. It would say that we're really puppets after all, and that God will save His favourite puppets from harm. So we'd better placate Him, and out comes the human-sacrifice list...
(As a quick aside...are there miraculous healings? yes, I believe there are, but I also believe...and I think this is pretty clear in the Gospels' context of healings...that they served a broader purpose...in other words, a healing was a means of communicating something, and the person healed was the medium at hand. And yes, that can be a purpose like showing the efficacy of petitionary prayer, so please, y'll, pray for me!)
So I'm not angry, because God has actually given me something better than a clean bill of physical health. He's given me the support I've needed to formulate an attitude of optimism and happiness, and to learn to see joy in every moment, even through this red haze of pain.
He didn't "do this for me", He didn't "give" me these things. I had to find them for myself, but at the back of each learning, lurking in the back of the classroom, so to speak, there He was, and occasionally He'd throw out a hint.
"You're getting warmer...no, colder...no, LOTS warmer..."
I had to use my free will to discover Joy, and the raod that leads to God, as the only way to overcome the free will of nature that's killing me.
And I choose, freely, to overcome it...every day.
Whew. That was a challenge.
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