Archive for November, 2013

Christians have the ballsiest religion. When the crap of life hits the fan, things go to hell in a handbasket, and the very bad happens, we do not have to explain why or sort out what the tragedy means. We move forward in hope, with firm footing for each step, and from strength to strength.

Make no mistake, we do not deal with tragedy by running away from it, as some may try to characterize “moving forward.” How can we? At the very center of our existence is the tragedy, humiliation, horror, and defeat of the incarnate God tortured and executed as a common criminal and victim of tyrannical hegemony. Indeed, to turn our lives over to Jesus Christ as Lord, even through he was a failure by human standards, because we believe he was right—How ballsy is that? And to have signed on with the one guy who beat death by overcoming it to rise again—How ballsy is that?!?

Because of the living, dying, and living-again testimony of Jesus Christ to the love, grace and power of God, we do not need to ask, “Why? but only “What’s next?”

To all atheists who repeat the tired argument that it is inconceivable that God can exist, be omnipotent, be perfectly good and just, and yet let bad things happen, I can offer only this:
In a chaotic and often dangerous world, s**t happens—sometimes really bad s**t happens, regardless of whether God exists or not. When disaster and crisis comes, we can do one of three things. We can stay and rot among the rubble, we can scratch along, just merely surviving, or we can move on and thrive. What to do? Move on and thrive, of course. But where will you find strength and purpose while overwhelmed by grief and beat down by tragedy? . . . “Within ourselves” is a lousy answer because it is a delusional conceit. Our own strength is not enough.

I wax militantly and with prejudice this day because I have just learned of the death of the 18 month old son of two of my clergy colleagues. He, yesterday, lost is long fight with leukemia.

His passing sucks large. And I cannot even begin to imagine how his family feels. But I do know with certainty that they will move forward, and not as the walking dead but in strength and purpose. Their faith and the God who is and who cares assures this. I cannot explain it, but my experience, as well as the experiences of 2,000 years of Christ-followers, attest to God’s powerful influence and interference in the lives of we who let God help. Screw mere survival. We are thriving—no matter what!

Godspeed Carl! And to Mike, Bri, and the rest—Go now in God’s love, strength, and peace.