I am a Christian with many questions. Some of those questions centre on why there’s a dissonance gap between Christianity’s promises and its day-to-day reality. Why doesn’t God speak to everyone? Why is it difficult to hear from him? Why don’t we prosper commensurate to our hard work and giving? Why don’t we overcome evil all the time? Why do good people suffer? Why aren’t bad people punished?
I understand the place of relationship, prayer, trials and mercy in a relationship with God. Notwithstanding, I still ask these questions. Sometimes God answers; other times he does not. When he does, I’m wise enough to know his answers are for me and may not apply to anyone else. Here are some of the answers I have received over the years. (In this thread, I am SP and he is GOD.)
SP: Some Christians say you don’t speak to them and when you do speak, you don’t do it often. I always assumed you did.
GOD: I would like to have conversations with my children all the time. But many of them don’t expect me to or even think it’s possible. They imagine hearing from God is something special or that it is reserved for “spiritual” people. Meanwhile, having a conversation with me is as basic as Christianity gets.
SP: If you’re always willing to speak, why is it so difficult to hear you or be sure it’s you?
GOD: When you’re in a relationship with a parent or a friend, before you see them, you can tell they’re coming by the sound of their footsteps or by their laughter. When they call you on the phone with a new number, you instantly recognise their voice, even before they introduce themselves. Some of my children don’t have a real relationship with me. They don’t spend enough time with me to be able to tell when I’m speaking.
Now SP, you’ve experienced the benefits of a consistent relationship with me. Recall the time you used to show up to pray at 7pm on Thursdays? Can you remember? You used to tease me about being punctual because I was usually there waiting for you. That’s my nature. I love predictability in relationships. If you set aside time for me and consistently show up, I will take you seriously and show up too. During our time together, I also noticed that you loved wisdom and words. That’s why I chose to reveal myself to you in scripture and not in worship. You really don’t like Christian songs, so that would have been a wasted effort. So you see, I’m very good at customising my relationships with the people I love.
SP: I’ve been working hard for so many years and have given so much. Why am I not richer? Oh wait, don’t answer that. Let me take a stab at answering. I remember you blessed me with so much when I was 28, but I messed up. I think I needed to build my character after that. Is that it? But tell me God, does sowing and reaping really work? Is that the route to prosperity? If so, why don’t I have more money? After all, I sow.
GOD: You assume that if you sow money, you will reap money. How much are you even giving sef?
When you plant a seed, I am the one who determines what body it will take, as it germinates. You say I haven’t given you enough money, but I have given you incredible influence, wisdom and friendships. Those are invaluable. One day, the riches you desire will come through those things.
SP: So, I still have some tough questions for you God. Why don’t I overcome evil all the time? Why do good people suffer like my parents, and why don’t bad people get punished?
GOD: Sometimes when you fail and when you’re hurt, you learn many things, especially compassion and humility. But that’s not the sole reason why you don’t overcome evil all the time. Evil by its very nature is senseless, brutal and iniquitous. Many times, your fellow humans are recruited to its cause. I need my own army of humans to stand with me to push back evil in the world.
I know you don’t think so, but I need you. I do, because the battle for the earth is not between me and evil alone. Humans are stakeholders too and for better or worse, they are caught in the middle. I have given humans incredible authority on this side of the universe. See how much good you do when you put your mind to it. I have observed all your crowdfunding efforts for the sick. I see how humans take care of orphans and how you strive to eradicate human slavery. People do that. I have placed eternity in the heart of man and he is capable of so much good. The cycle of life is, the strong protect the weak and the rich defend the poor. It is not always so, but one day this chapter of the earth will close and a new one will be written where there will be justice.God would like to speak with his children all the time. But many don't expect him to. Click To Tweet Sometimes when you fail, you learn compassion and humility. Click To Tweet