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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

God has no perfect plan for us...

As explained by one of my favorite bloggers:
Either there is no need to pray at all, which contradicts the entire point of Jesus telling his disciples how to do it, or God's will is not presently being done on Earth. His will prevails in Heaven, as it does not on Earth, just as His kingdom reigns in Heaven, as it does not on Earth.
I had not previously given this idea much thought, as I think I had already subconsciously inferred it. But it seems fundamentally true. I know those of a strict reformed position that hold to a view of meticulous providence (the idea that God determines the course of every detail, big and small) will not agree with me. That's fine, we share radically different worldviews and there is not much by way of convincing that I could possibly do here.

But it does seem true that God does not micromanage our lives and, by order of His Will, does not superimpose upon our human autonomy. If prayers are to be meaningful, we have to accept the fact that we are asking for things that are not already a reality. I truly believe that God does not desire for there to be such abject suffering in this world, where children starve to death every day. I truly believe that God does not desire the grotesque and barbaric practice of human-trafficking. I truly believe that God does not desire the helpless to die alone in shadows and the weak to never find strength. By extension and consequence, I don't believe that God plans for these things either. But out of the freedom of humankind we have built shrines to the decadent and glorified the most profane things. In our freedom we have subjugated the weak and through the rapine of the helpless, caused untold suffering. What we know is that God interacts with our freedom in some untold way, knitting plans out of broken seams and creating an arabesque of colors out of haphazard knots and toneless hues.

As Christians, we ought to be praying as Jesus requested, for his kingdom that is in heaven to be so on earth. We must pray for God's will to be here just as it is in heaven. But most importantly, we MUST be forces for the things we pray for. Let the helpless know mercy because we have brought them to God's son. Let the broken know healing for we have brought them to our savior who was broken. Let the thirsty and hungry find water and food in our hands and let violence tremble at how big Love can get.