Sharing of common sense and wisdom…

Archive for 20/10/2010

God Allows It?

Contributed by:  Joshua (Ministry)

“The optimist sees the doughnut, the pessimist sees the hole.”

Life is such that it is up to individuals to pay attention to the different parts of life’s encounters and make a story out of them.

Recently a young medical student was knocked down by a London bus during midnight when she was crossing the road.  The young lady studied medicine at Cambridge University.  So a church-mate asked me, “Why is God allowing such thing to happen?” 

This is a classic perception that is planted deep inside our mind. We all, as human being love to enjoy all the good things and hope that they are never taken away, while bad happenings must be an act of God! (Because God allows it to happen). We all blame the God, one way or another.  Seldom we remember even the smallest good things happen to us, attribute our appreciation to God’s doing.

My answer to this church-mate is: “God didn’t allow this or that… according to what we think or suspect. ” 

Many christians hold the idea that everything on earth must go through “permission” of God otherwise it will not happen.  Is that true?  seriously speaking, no one could confirm such doctrine.  So, once we take it for granted, we form our own “divine” understanding that it is the case. So, the death of this young medical school lady should be attributed to God’s permission!?  Is God cruel or loving?  Why does He allows bad things to happen?

Dear brothers and sisters, stop guessing God. Once we “think” that we understand such happenings in life, we soon lost ourselves in the woods again. Yes, God intervenes in many parts of humanity and our life based on His plan. But God does not owe us an answer as to why. Our focus should be on the eternity and not this earthy world’s occurences that form just a passage of time. We can hope for the best but still have to face the worse in each time slot. Thinking that God “allows this and that to happen” merely put blame on God. In this instance, the bus driver made mistakes and killed the young medical school lady. The bus driver is wrong of course. Is God wrong too?  But how did the lady cross the road at that moment? 

“The good news is that God has a plan. The world is not out of control, neither is it based dependent on human ingenuity for its survival. God is in control and he knows what he is doing. He has not left us in the dark. … At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ – everything in heaven and on earth.”  

To guess whether God allows this and that to happen does not strengthen our faith in God and will not make this world any better.

Pointing People to Christ

Contributed by:  Joshua (Ministry)

Let me use the following extracts to share with people who are lost in the woods while serving their church and community.

“The point of ministry is to point people to Christ.” 

Following mainstream activities can be an issue in conflict with the essence of pointing people to Christ. I have a friend who lives and attends church in one of developed nation – The Lion City State.  He expressed that some churches tend to overly involved in community services and up to a point, start to conceal even their identity in order to be involved. The main reason being that the local authority on one hand encouraging religious organizations to actively participate in community services, yet the law forbids such entities to preach their respective religion to the masses. The city state remains a multi-racial society and nation. This is to prevent any conflict of spreading different religions. There is nothing wrong with that.

When a church’s ministry steps into such sensitive ground of doing community services, it is important to learn to be “right on target”.  What does it means?  Let’s follow the basic rule here,

(1)  It is alright to provide for the poor and needy, at the same time maintaining the identity of Christianity. i.e. the church provides its resources helping the community. That’s all. It does not involve preaching of religion in this case.

(2)  Be sensitive of conducting public activities without breaking the law.

(3)  When holding activities in the church premises with its members and community folks, rituals and tradition are valuable and help to point people to Christ. It is not right to use church premises to conduct too many social and cultural activities under the name of community services, and eventually lost its identity. Church is church, not a community centre.

Maintaining a clear sense of calling – Pointing People to Christ is the core of christianity.  Provide for the poor & needy is but one of the roles of christians, not the highest calling.

“There is no shortage of people who will participate in community services and religion, but there are few who will point people to Christ.”

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