There was a time when questioning God’s state of mind was considered taboo, especially in my household. But getting older with an impressive roster of life experiences under my belt, still hasn’t provided the answers to the greatest mystery of them all.
When I was younger, the attempts to guess about God’s infuriating randomness and befuddling disappearing acts during the times when His miraculous rescues would be most appreciated, were performed by ordained men in over-sized robes.
The teachings were stringently direct with the warnings of how nothing we internalized could be rebuked or challenged. We had to obediently believe the unbelievable, because that’s the only way to guarantee the first-class ticket to a place called heaven.
My youthful curiosity constantly badgered the part of me that just wanted to live without the annoyance of demanding a more adequate explanation, for why the Almighty rarely demonstrates how He earned that imposing title.
Death was always a huge obstacle when it hit close to home.
When a distant relative, who had been extensively coaching me for my A level exams unexpectedly passed away in a car accident on his way back from a friend’s wedding, the shock of his abrupt and permanent absence was a lot to bear for an impressionable teenager, who couldn’t comprehend the tragedy.
My maternal grandfather’s death some years earlier was brutal, but I was able to compute his old age with life’s basic requirements. Of course looking back now, as an adult woman in her forties, I realize how young he actually was, at sixty-three, and why his diabetic coma could’ve been avoided.
But my relative was a young, healthy man with his whole life ahead of him. He was also a devoted Christian, who spent a lot of time illustrating why he was a steadfast believer. His method of preaching was refreshingly not preachy. He had the gift of being the dutiful representative of God’s kingdom, and he took that role seriously.
His goodness and grace, coupled with the unrelenting worship of his heavenly father, which took precedence over worldly temptations convinced me that he would live forever. And it was frighteningly disruptive when he died before his time, and in such a violent way.
Why did God let that happen?
It was hard to make sense of something that was senselessly wrong, and even now I still grapple with the meaning behind the inspirational quotes that are meant to assuage grief and provide some level of reasonability:
God’s time is the best. God’s time is not our time. Things happen for a reason. Only God knows why.
Christians are content in the practice of assigning faith to an unproven phenomenon that can only thrive when one or two are gathered for the event of a mental exercise, that endorses the reality of what can’t be seen.
If you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, it’s the very least you can do when you consider how He was put to death in the most gruesome way for the sake of cleansing our sins away.
We didn’t ask for this ultimate sacrifice. It was God’s mercy and boundless love that produced this lifelong pact that we as humans have to carry out, to honor the death and resurrection of God’s only begotten Son; whether we comprehend it or not.
As the globe spins around on cue, getting older presents the terrifying prospect that nothing you were taught holds up, and even worse, is the fact that your own personalized interpretations don’t form the comforting replacement.
If “God’s time is the best,” then why the hell does He purposely get it wrong when getting it right is a matter of life and death?
If “Only God knows why” how about a refresher course every now and then, to remind us about the logic behind the incomprehensible incidences that leave us woefully perplexed with shaken faith.
Of course everything happens for a reason, but lately, the fiery status of a world torn apart by the infestation of lawlessness, and the systemic avenging from gross negligence, is reminiscent of the verses in the Book of Revelation, that details the scornfulness of end of days.
There’s also the horrific occurrences that validate how insignificant we are as humans made of flesh and blood, who were brought to this earth without consent and with the promise of how “God’s time is our time,” even when those actions against us transpire in ways that mock our illustrious journey.
Maybe bad things happen on God’s watch because life sucks.
Regardless of diligent church attendance or daily prayers to Allah, our fate was sealed the moment we emerged into the whip of cold air and took that first breath.
God doesn’t recklessly let things happen in the time He schedules, because that would amount to a type of cruelty that’s unforgivable.
We have to examine the whole issue in order to begin to understand how much religion renders us powerless and robotic in the acceptance of what is inhumanly impossible to process.
For me, the answers lie in the truth of how shit happens, and why God obviously agrees, which is why He rarely stages an intervention.
And why would He?
Regardless of our predicament or the shit luck we can’t escape, we believe anyway.