God knows how to tend to the world’s problems | Church Corner

Does God has priorities? Why would God even need priorities? He gets everything just the way he wants it, right?

  • Thursday, February 9, 2017 11:29am
  • Life

Originally published Jan. 18, 2017

Does God has priorities?

Why would God even need priorities? He gets everything just the way he wants it, right? He has the wisdom to know how things ought to be, the power to bring it about and the authority to keep it that way. Lucky God.

And that’s exactly what gives us pause when we see something wrong or lacking in this world. “If God is really all-powerful and all-good, why doesn’t he prevent X bad thing from happening or make X good thing come about?” Whatever offending aspect of life we may have in view, we assume it can be fixed with no serious repercussions elsewhere. “If God is God, after all, He could do it.” Instead of pondering his sacred priorities, we assume he’s holding out on us.

A wonderful couple had chosen the perfect location for their house with woods off the backyard and a beautiful view to the east. They wanted everything to be perfect and having the necessary time, talent and resources, they began making it so. Their dream house had a chef’s kitchen; two-bay garage with separate, attached shop stocked with tools; oversized master with walk-in and built-ins; heated floors; separate hobby and rec rooms; golf-worthy lawn; flower garden with trellis, gazebo and water feature; and fancy electronics throughout. It was flawless.

And it stayed that way. Some nice places go to the dogs due to sloppy living. Not here. For three and a half years things were, for the most part, just as they wished them to be, envy of the neighborhood. Then year four came. The hobby room no longer functioned, shop wasn’t readily usable, garden was dead and the water had stopped flowing in the water feature. What happened?

Answer: they had adopted a 4-year-old and he became the new priority in their life. So the hobby room had been converted into a bedroom, dangerous tools locked up, water feature shut off (drowning hazard), a play structure was going in where the garden had been and, in general, things were getting messy. Good parents make tradeoffs – not because they’re powerless, but because the child needs its own measure of power; room and resources to grow and learn that would otherwise be used differently. Resources are sacrificed and freedoms restricted for a greater priority.

God has also made tradeoffs for a greater priority. You don’t have to strain your brain to recognize that a universe forced into perfection by his power can’t also provide true freedom to its inhabitants – it’s either going to be one way or the other, but not both.

From another viewpoint, imagine this same 4-year-old after a skinned knee, or a fight with a neighborhood kid demanding that, if his parents are good, they’ll never let these things happen again. A parent can’t isolate these two painful events from the bigger picture. This child would have to be protected from the outdoors (and all hard surfaces), from relationships and from personal responsibility. In other words, this protection would cost him nearly everything worth living for. Blood and scrapes affect the body, yes, but relationships, responsibility and interaction with the environment all affect the soul. No good parent would meet this 4-year-old’s demands, even if they could.

For more complex, yet very similar reasons, God, in his goodness, cannot grant us a world without pain and problems; the cost is simply too high. That perfect world we want? It’s waiting for us at the edge of forever, but for now, this present world is our nursery, our academy and our proving ground with all its challenges. Jesus joined us in the pain and problems, experienced them at their worst, overcame them and opened a doorway for us to that perfect world we yearn for.

All of that said, what could God possibly do better? Trust him! And the next time someone complains that God’s doing a poor job as ruler over this world’s circumstances, tell them they’ve missed the point: his role as father has always been his priority.

Steve Strombom writes from the Enumclaw Church of the Nazarene.

More in Life

Read the first two books before tackling ‘Banished’

Well, look at you. And you do — ten times a day,… Continue reading

Buckley Kiwanis names Students of the Month

For January, students from White River High School, Glacier Middle School and Carbonado Historical School District were chosen.

Local students named to WSU honor roll

Students from Black Diamond to Sumner found themselves on WSU’s President’s Honor Roll.

It may take time to sink into but ‘How to Stop Time’ is worth the read

The big hand is on the “12.” And the little hand is,… Continue reading

This book will WOW you | Point of Review

Wow. Just… wow. Did you see that? Wasn’t it awesome? It was… Continue reading

EHS graduate McNab promoted to Lieutenant Colonel

Tom McNab was recently promoted to the rank of lieutenant colonel in the United States Air Force.

White River Valley Museum opens “Suffer for Beauty” exhibit

Corsets, bras, and bustles, oh my! The White River Valley Museum is hosting its new event, “Suffer for Beauty,” which is all about the changing ideals of female beauty through the ages. The exhibit runs through June 17.

Library’s art and writing contest returns to Pierce County | Pierce County Library System

Pierce County teens are encouraged to express themselves through writing, painting, drawing and more for the annual Our Own Expressions competition, hosted by the Pierce County Library System.

‘School of Awake’ offers advice to adolescent girls

Twinkle, twinkle. For as long as you can remember, you’ve known how… Continue reading

Mental health first aid training in Enumclaw | The Summit

Friday, January 19 at 7 p.m., Dr. Michelle Bengtson will kick off the mental health-themed weekend by speaking on Hope for Depression: The World’s Greatest Epidemic. Dr. Bengtson is the author of the award winning “Hope Prevails: Insights from a Doctor’s Personal Journey through Depression.”

Print 3-D creations at Pierce County Library System

Bring a ready-to-print file and watch the magic of 3-D printing bring the file to life at Pierce County Library System’s 3-D Print Shop. The free print shop sessions are offered January through March at Pierce County Libraries, giving people the opportunity to use the 3-D printers to create items, get quick design lessons, and learn the 3-D printing process.

The past is the past, a review of ‘Robicheaux’

You don’t want to talk about it. You’ve been through rough times,… Continue reading