Fires, Floods, And Storms

by Rich Dixon on July 6, 2012

Fires char thousands of acres and destroy hundreds of homes in the western U.S. Deadly storms in eastern states leave millions without power in sweltering heat. Floods displace entire communities. It’s enough to leave us wondering when the frogs and locusts will show up.

Where’s God?

Ever asked that question? I have, and I’ll bet you have too. When it seems like the world’s disintegrating around us, it’s easy to wonder what God’s up to.

Then I think about the people helped by International Justice Mission, those living in slavery, trafficked illegally, or forced into the sex trade. I think about children robbed of opportunity and dignity.

“Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves; and, under a just God, cannot long retain it.” Abraham Lincoln

I want to believe Mr. Lincoln was right. I believe God is just, but when I see all that happens in the world, I have to admit—I don’t get it.

And that’s the key. I don’t get it. I’m not supposed to. He’s God. I’m not. It’s good to remember that.

Jesus told this parable:

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” Matthew 7:24-27

It’s easy to focus on wise and foolish builders, on homes build on rock and sand. But I think it’s important to notice that both men experienced exactly the same storm. Wise and foolish doesn’t change the storm.

I don’t get why God allows horrible circumstances and a broken world to persist. I don’t get why He permits devastating storms. But I don’t have to get it. That’s not my job. My job is to follow.

And when a storm happens, following means doing what I can to help the victims.

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