*I do realize that this won't be very coherent. Perhaps one day, I'll go back and revise. But I wanted to get these thoughts out here for now. - me*
What I love is that Easter comes in the Spring – the time when trees, yards, grassy fields, and flowers go from appearing to have died to showing their magnificent colors and durability once again.
Reminders of Jesus and His everlasting reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
Though beaten, brutalized, betrayed, nailed, mocked and killed, death did not stop Him. It did not keep Him locked in its grip forever. Instead, He defeated death, taking upon Himself (for those willing to simply accept Him as their own personal sacrificial, substitute lamb, to atone for their sins) the full consequences for our sins – sins of which He had never committed, although tempted by the devil himself when at His most desperate, weak, vulnerable hour.
He did not stay dead. He was brought back, like the wildflowers and fruits on the vines, like blades of grass and the leaves that adorn the limbs of the most beautiful trees. But unlike the things of this earth, He is eternal. He was willing to die on my behalf. He loves me and you desperately. He actually died and came back instead of simply going into a type of hibernation. Even plants don’t come back when they are killed. But Jesus’ glory never dulls, never fades, never rests. Jesus doesn’t hibernate in the winter - He is always available, always willing, always alive and aware and active.
I was really upset with God the other day. It is so impossible for me to understand how a God who would sacrifice His precious Son for me could allow the all-out massacres that happened in Jericho, in Egypt, outside of Noah’s ark, in Rwanda, during the Crusades, during the Holocaust, and so on and so on and so on. I do know that Jesus will be glorified, and that God knew this before offering His Son. If I knew for certain that my child would not stay dead – that he/she would defeat death to save all of mankind and be worshipped and loved for all eternity, I might, MIGHT, be willing to sacrifice them too.
But did little babies have to be dropped onto the bayonets of Hitler’s solders to truly demonstrate man’s depravity and our critical need for a Savior? See - that's where I get all confused. And upset. And frustrated.
I figure the only reasons God allows pain, sickness and abuse to happen to us is because –
1) He can use it for good in the end
2) He draws us to Himself when we are at our most desperate
3) He reveals Himself to people through Christians who respond to these great needs.
4) It gives Christians a chance to serve God and thus know/rely on Him more
5) It proves just how utterly rotten we can be and how much we need God’s intervention
6) It proves just how good the Good News truly is.
Honestly, who would consider the Gospel “good news” unless they first knew the bad news – that unless we accept the free (to us) offer of salvation, we will spend our eternity separated from God and His Saving, Great Love, and we will be forever reminded of how we blatantly ignored this Great Love, and the sins that put us in such a state. To think it possible that I might could spend forever in a place with no pain or suffering, instead of a place full of regret, pain, and much suffering – I don’t see how one could miss out on at least giving God the change to reveal Himself and confirm whatever faith they’re willing to put in His Word.
I’m one of the most stubborn people I’ve ever known, and He even took the teeny tiny doubt I had in what I would tell people was my assuredness of His non-existence, and He grew it into the strong faith I now have. I was just barely willing to give Him a chance, and He took that and expanded it until I could deny Him no longer. Now, for me to deny the existence of God is to deny own very own existence. It’s utterly impossible.