Thursday, October 17, 2013

Questions on Salvation and God

What is the choice to make?

What is there to know?

I was driving to a meeting this morning.  I had thought to pray before I left, something I can very easily forget when I'm going too fast.  Going nowhere for so many years, I tend to go too fast these days.  I have the ability to go, and I can go.  Naturally, I want to go.  I want to go, and go, and go, as fast as I can into the future. 

I prayed for many things, and I gave thanks for several things.  Some fear slipped away, and some certainty replaced it.

And I was thinking as I drove.  It is true, that any amount of proof and evidence will not move some people.  But why?  Jesus said that only those who the Father draws to him can come to him.  I had the thought: Why doesn't God draw every single individual to Jesus Christ?  I couldn't answer that question in my head.

There is no utter understanding of God.  Why?  Because all I have is a conception, as much as I hate to admit it, there are great and intense limits to my ability to comprehend the Father.  I haven't reached those limits yet.  In fact I'm just building a healthy conception of God, hopefully, with God's constant input and adjustment.  But all it will ever be on this planet, in this meaty form of flesh and blood, is an incomplete conception.  My mind doesn't fathom infinity, I tend to look at any given situation in linear terms.  And I can even scope out and say that alright, I'm one line proceeding through the universe.  And there are other lines of individuals also proceeding forward, and sometimes they intersect, and others end, others begin.  My conception of God might be a line, of sorts, proceeding forward also, but that would be incorrect wouldn't it?

The Bible says God is eternal, the beginning and the end, all at the same time.  To say God is a reflecting diamond of truth creating and projecting the lines, well that's not enough either is it?  What is infinity?  I don't really know.  It has to do with time, and having the ability to be everywhere at one moment, all the while knowing the future completely, knowing the past completely, and having the ability to build an entire universe from a black abyss.  Unfortunately I cannot conceive of it's totality.  I've only just merely outlined God's interactions with humanity, and only then in some limited incomplete sense. 

Thinking about all of that didn't really get me anywhere, just as going down a line into infinity doesn't really get you anywhere, you just keep going, with no end in sight. 

The question remains.  When any given human is born and lives, they are not guaranteed salvation.  It is a free gift laid out for them, but they must reach out and accept that gift.  How unspeakable is the loss of a soul?  Especially some of my atheist friends.  They are such vital people.  Their minds are so creative, their views so intriguing.  How unthinkable would be the loss of even one of these fine individuals to the abyss of nothingness? 

The despair is too much to fathom.  The idea of so many millions and billions of children brought through a public education system that teaches evolution as the end all be all of reason considering the origin of the universe.  A public education system that teaches core and I'll admit quite interesting subjects like math, history, science, and english.  But how useful are these classes truly?  What about morality class?  What about life management skills?  What about self growth class?  What about philosophy?  And even further, what about banking skills, loan assessment, how to pay taxes, pitfalls in advertising, and healthy eating?  So I look at a public education system leading billions astray.  I look at a media and worldview that is toxic to the very perpetuation of civilization.  And my heart is breaking for those things.  It is truly breaking.

Still the question remains.  Why does God not draw every man, woman, and child to Jesus Christ?  And if I fold my hands, and pray hard enough, if I fast and tear my clothes, if I cry out, weep, scream to God, for hours and hours, days and weeks, might he move to save just a few more?  Is there any sacrifice I can make, any withholding that I can perform that might move my Father to save more, or even to save all?

The feeling of Christ within, the transformation being done in my spirit is so wonderful I can't help but want it for every single person on the planet.  I have seen how they suffer, and who could know as well as I do the kind of inner suffering that takes place when one is disconnected from God, trudging a road of disaster desperately stuffing every pleasure into my heart known to man that might satisfy me, only to get further and further from truth, and deeper and deeper into all manner of addiction?

The Father will not draw all to Christ.  Why?  I don't know.  But I trust him.  I also believe in the power of prayer.  I have seen that kind of power at work in my life, and in others lives.  I've seen it first hand, and it's very real.  We are not bystanders in the spiritual conflict taking place.  We can effect incredible changes, just by folding our hands, getting on our knees, and begging the Father to move hearts and minds. 

And maybe that's the truth of this situation.  There is another side than just the Father.  There is some great and terrible power that the evil one holds.  That power is shown in John 6:66 (NIV) "From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him."  The power of the evil one is to turn many away from truth, and God will not override that power.  God has provided an escape hatch for those who will simply receive it, and that is Jesus Christ.  But that power of the evil one remains. 

I have a million questions, one or two for every moment and situation in the world.  There isn't anything wrong with that.  We all have questions.  We all struggle with our faith.  As many questions as I have, I have a firm and baseline truth that is nestled deep in my heart: My Father knows what he is doing.  The best thing I can do, is learn to accept the things I can't change, and learn to peacefully change the things I can.  And even if great struggle and persecution come upon me, even if all I have including the clothes on my back disappears in disaster and storm, I still have all I need.  And even if they take my life, they can only take my physical body, my spirit lives on.  How comforting is that?  Nothing can take God away from me.

I have a conception of God and the world around me.  This is my Christian worldview.  And it's needed a lot of tweaking.  That's absolutely fine.  I've had to seek out help for many of my issues, a lot of it going back to abuse I received when I was a child.  I have to journal on that, write it all down, and face it.  I'm learning to do that from some very helpful books from the Minirith Meier Clinic.  And on that note, I will return to my reading and journaling, as difficult as it is.

God be with you all, and thank you.  :)