Friday, March 5, 2010

God Does Not Pinch

Sometimes - more often than you would think - I encounter someone who shares a remark such as: "God sure knew what he was doing when he gave Stross to you and Mark." Or "I think God gave you Stross as a gift because he (Stross) can help you learn something about God."

I don't ascribe to the theology that shapes those statements - a belief that God causes babies to be born with birth defects, albeit, if only for a good reason.

I don't ascribe to the theology that shapes unspoken (but known to exist) thoughts either - a belief that God gave us Stross because of something we had done and that we needed to be taught a lesson. Stross, they assert, was to be our tutor.

Now here's what is most fascinating to me: Stross has been a wonderful life tutor - a definite gift from God. But I have never believed - nor can I imagine ever believing - that God knitted Stross together in my womb defectively. Not on purpose and certainly not accidentally. It simply happened, because that's the way things go sometimes in this imperfect world we live in.

Usually those who make the comments noted above are uncomfortable with my refusal to believe in a God who makes malformed babies. Even if for a reason. But I simply cannot believe in a God who "pinches." (That sentence won't make sense until you watch the video.)

In today's vlog I share a guilty story about something I did when I was probably 9 or 10 years old. What happened on the day I describe is likely the reason I never - not even for one second, honestly - have been mad at God about Stross. Oh, I get mad at the world and other people sometimes concerning circumstances related to Stross - but never mad at God about Stross' life condition or how it has shaped our future.

I wonder what you will think after you listen to the story.

I also wonder if the people who make the comments I shared above ever stop to think this: If they are right about God giving me Stross to teach me a lesson, he or she should really pay attention to what I have learned because of Stross, despite my protestations.

God has given me a lot to say.

Thanks for listening.

P.S. - I was sick last week: a monster cold. Feeling better now, thankfully!


Jill B said...

I agree with your ultimate destination -- and I suspect most people do. Not sure if we begin at the same starting point, however. It would be an interesting conversation to have one of these days. :-)

KaKi said...

Thank you Joy. The third hospital stay we had with Stephen in his first year of life, I had someone come and say those words to me. "God is building character in you." REALLY???? God is causing my baby to die so I can have more character????REALLYYYY????? I was young, and had to unsteady of an understanding of God at the time to handle it. So when our minister came to see us (I think he got word we were in trouble), I told him to take his God and go to hell. I did!! I said that!! And it took me a long time to come back to God. and I ultimately came to the place you are. God is love. Pure and simple! Like pinches and pinches, but God is love. (btw that same young woman has a young son dying of wonder if her view of God has changed? I hope so for her sake.)

Joy said...

Isn't it interesting that some feel they know the dynamics of another person's relationship with God better than that other person?

Unfortunately, even well-intended bystanders can get in the way of what's possible with God by coloring the situation to suit themselves.

Prayer intercession, yes.

Perspective intervention, no.

KaKi said...

Okay, I am not sure my comment made much sense.....I promise I am not drinking..yet.! Just kidding. Weird. But when I read it just now, I think I left out some words. Oh well. I think you got the gist!

Joy said...

Well ... whatever is affecting you, must be affecting me, as it made sense - missing words or not.

No worries!