Mad at God (4/29/2018)

Recently I had a conversation with someone who is going through some very difficult life struggles. The conversation started with me asking, “How are you doing?” She started talking about the stress on her and her family. After a few minutes, she said, “Sometimes I get mad at God because of what’s happening.” Before I could say anything, she immediately said, “That’s when I feel his presence the most.”

This brings us to an important question. Is it OK to be mad at God? That’s a theological question many people ask. If we think about it, we realize this question doesn’t really get to the heart of the matter. There’s a better question to ask. Instead of asking, “Is it OK to be angry with God?” the better question is, “Why am I angry with God?”

The answer is usually very simple. Merriam Webster defines “anger” as “an intense emotional state induced by displeasure.” We get angry with God because we’re displeased life isn’t going our way. We blame him for what’s happening. He should have done something to prevent our pain. (more…)

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Knowing God’s Will (4/22/2018)

Right after I graduated from high school, I joined an EMT class so I could volunteer with the local rescue squad. The class consisted of studying basic first aid as well as learning how to do patient assessment, apply splints and administer first aid. These skills are called “practicals.”

During patient assessment, the first thing you’re taught to do was “shake and shout.” This meant the first responder would kneel down beside a patient who appeared to be unconscious, place his hands on the patient’s shoulders, gently shake her while loudly asking, “Are you alright?” in each ear.

One evening our instructor was late for class so she told us to work on the “practicals” until she arrived. As we practiced the various skills we’d need to pass the test, I noticed that one of my classmates, Caroline, was starting the patient assessment.

Let me take a moment and say Caroline had a good heart and was a very likeable person. However, if you were in a car crash and Caroline showed up with the ambulance crew, your odds of survival would be higher if you did CPR on yourself than if she did it. For example, one evening during a break, she told us she went squirrel hunting. After she shot the squirrel, she laid it on a stump and did chest compressions on it to see if she could revive it. (more…)

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God’s View of Death (4/15/18)

Many years ago, when I was growing up in West Virginia, a handsome young man from a neighboring family was engaged to a lovely young lady. They had the wedding plans completed and knew how they were going to start their lives together.

The night before the wedding his buddies threw him a bachelor party. It included consuming some alcoholic beverages. He left the party and drove home. Along the way, he wrecked his vehicle…and was killed. Needless to say, his family was devastated. It took his fiancé years to recover and move on with her life.

In situations like this, people often ask, “How could God do this?” God is powerful enough to create the universe so he could certainly stop someone from being killed in a wreck. But was this God’s fault? Did God tell him to drink and drive? (more…)

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Questioning God (4/8/2018)

One of my favorite shows when I was growing up was WKRP in Cincinnati. It focused on a struggling radio station run by a group of misfits.

In one episode, the station manager, Mr. Carlson, decided to promote the station at Thanksgiving by giving away live turkeys. He thought it would be a great idea to release them from a helicopter that was hovering over a mall parking lot. They threw the turkeys out of the copter…and the turkeys plummeted to the ground, smashing through car windshields while narrowly missing spectators.

Mr. Carlson had spent a lot of time and money planning everything down to the last detail. There was only one problem. His whole thought process was based on faulty information. Wild turkeys can fly. Domestic turkeys can’t. Just because Mr. Carlson believed domestic turkeys could fly didn’t mean they actually would. One untruth changed the whole outcome.

Unfortunately, there are untruths about God which have become popular in the church. We’re going to take the next few weeks and look at some of them. This week we’re going to address the question, “Can we question God?” Most of us have heard others say, “We’re not supposed to question God.” Perhaps you’ve said it yourself. Is this biblical? (more…)

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