But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”And Jesus' life led to this.
And Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." And they cast lots to divide his garments.
The earth is the LORD’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein
- is still the Word of God. God does not lie and He does not change from day to day.
We live in a world where we sacrifice. Man, don't we. We have children and let strangers raise them in day care. We don't have time for a nourishing meal or we have many memories of a meal that was so stressful - that fast food is delicious. We don't have time for friends. We come home so wrung out that we all turn on the television. How great is television? We need more wholesome, holy things. People stay away because we aren't always nice to each other. Remember summer days and times in the 1970's and before? Time moved slowly. People gathered. People quilted and sewed. If you looked down your street, people did gather. Time was gentle. Is this sentimental clap trap? No. Look at the news. Now people obsess if they are doing enough work or if work is beneficial. People are jealous of others with time on their hands. Just as people are jealous with more items. Our grandparents bought their houses. Our great-grandparents were cared for in our homes (Lord help me with my parent!). Our parents bought our educations as a gift. We are sacrificing.
Look at the Scandinavian countries. Life is easier. Smaller homes, kids in government care very, very early. Less worry over health care. Yet they have given up freedom and a lot of their beliefs. Watered down. In worst case scenario, they are in Bad Shape if the Government goes Bad. In the United States, we believe in God and yet act badly. Things are not as crisp and clean as when we believed in faith to do right and God will care for us.
Faith and the amount of it effects all of us.
Do you remember in the Scriptures, a loan was supposed to be 7 years. Wouldn't we all be or have been happier with a house affordable in 7 years that wasn't in a woebegone neighborhood with hopelessness, danger and drugs? Why aren't we demanding Congress to order our lives in ways that help people instead of this spiral?
Is God truly weakened by this? I would say No. But God will give us enough rope in free will. So many miracles in the Scriptures are like the father crying out, "I believe, help my unbelief." Can't we all relate to that? We have to put our houses in order and give God glory. People are much more interested, ultimately, in God who gives mercy and blessings. Because God is Love. God says work and grow faith. Believe. Give it a leap.
Faith is a leap. We gave a car once to our Church. Now we have two kids with one car. We need to work on being financially generous to our Church, but funds are a financial diet at our house. Lean. Our financial structure is different than others.
(Have you ever thought about communion? Communion is a meal. It is the New Covenant. The importance of communion is this.... at a restaurant, we eat a meal and we are subjected to a conversation behind us. I've heard some that I Still Remember. Awful. Particularly one anniversary meal at Perry's ... the importance of Communion is - we are together. We wait for the person next in line to Receive. And pray for them. It's a symbol of God. And I believe Communion is God.)
So... suffering.... why does it occur. Is it a weakened God? A man is terminally ill (a friend's family). What could one act of God be in this? His daughter is to step up to the plate. To overcome her ingrained and complete self interest. Maybe she is to learn that she loves her dad more than herself, she is supposed to grow. To have to ask others to help her.
Helping others, when they ask, is an act of God. Helping others by forcing your will upon them, is not. Motivations are important and self defining. It builds a house.
Is love day care? Nursing homes? Does throwing money at someone help them? Withdraw support? Avoidance? Or is it time, talent and effort. Business decisions can sometimes be covered with practicality. Practicality is much more easy to rely upon. But they lead to day care and nursing homes. Less real care. If the sole goal in life is money, we have fragmented families and nights spent in front of the television. In the end, did it make us better people?
Jesus took death from us. He didn't take suffering. We have to grow in faith and see God in all things. Rejecting what is wrong. It comes with a cost. Jesus blazed the trail. Giving us His Holy Spirit. We grow in God when life is difficult, there isn't any praise, but we still believe, believe, believe we need to do as God would have us do.
Times are very hard at my house these days. Fear. Some Isolation. Difficult guarded conversations. Please pray for my family. We sure could use it.