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DOESN'T GOD CARE?

 

 

 

Coach Dave Daubenmire
January 9, 2006
NewsWithViews.com

"I hate you Dad" said my diminutive 7-year old daughter Maggie a few years ago, not appreciating the style of shoes I had just bought for her. "You never do what I want you to do."

I don't know if I have ever followed a more heart-wrenching story than the mental torture the folks in those small West Virginia mining towns have endured over the past few days. Never has the term "thrill of victory, agony of defeat" been so applicable to what those god-fearing folks experienced.

I weep with them. I grieve with them. I empathize with their despair. Let nothing be said that will diminish the hardship and disappointment thrust upon them. There is nothing more painful than the death of a loved-one.

May God's Grace be sufficient.

Once again, however, I feel compelled to point out where the message of modern Christianity has fallen short.

Never, in my 19 years as a Christian, have I seen the name of Jesus so freely broadcast on secular news. As the dream of a miracle melted into a nightmare, the under-belly of modern faith-teaching was exposed. From "praise the Lord" and "thank you Jesus," to "I don't know why God let our miracle be taken away." and "it really makes me question my faith" in a matter of hours. The secular press loved showing that God couldn't, or wouldn't deliver. The message, although subtle, was clear. God can't be trusted.

Is personal suffering increasing, or is it just that instant-media makes it appear more prevalent? From the tsunami, Katrina, war, to the coal mines, the human drama is played out, live, in our living rooms. This leads invariably to the question of God, the nature of God, the power of God, and the love of God. No matter how hard they try to remove God from America, they can’t get him out of our mind.

"How can a loving, all-powerful God allow these things to happen? These are good folks, they go to church, they pray. Why does God seem to ignore them?" Those are the questions the TV asks. God could do something, but He won't, is the subliminal response.

Unfortunately, when disaster hits, most Christians begin searching for the same answers as the secularists who have invaded their living rooms. Christianity should provide answers, not questions. And it does. But modern-Christianity has lost its focus. That is why some Christians are more confused than Katie Couric.

Just this morning as my wife Michele and I were reading the Bible together as is our custom, I was struck by Mathew 4:17. "From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." The central message of our Lord, from the time He began to teach, was one of repentance.

Why?

See, there was a time when the emphasis of Christianity was not on this life, but on the next. Jesus said "For God so loved the world; that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life." (Jon 3:16) The focus of Christ was on Heaven, the eternal life.

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: so Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many: and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation (Hebrews 9:27-28)

Don't you know that we are ALL going to die? No flesh escapes this world alive. And after death, comes judgment. "Repent," Jesus said, there is a better life waiting. But you must change your ways.

But that isn't the popular message of today’s seeking, sensitive church. No, my friends, the message has changed. Today, Jesus is a best buddy, a spiritual Santa Clause, who came to fulfill all of our desires here on earth, and to protect us from all tragedy and trouble. We pray and we pray, and we pray, hoping somehow to move God's heart to give us what we desire. When he doesn't come through, our faith falters.

"Who wants to serve a God who treats His kids like that?" I heard one pundit say. "Why wouldn't He answer our prayers?"

That guy sounds like seven-year old Maggie.

Recently, when speaking in a church regarding our efforts with the Katrina victims, I made this statement. "People ask all of the time, 'How could God allow this to happen? What have those people done to deserve losing everything they had?' The better question to ask ourselves is "Why have I been spared? Thank God I don't get what I deserve."

After completing my presentation that day, a fake-smiling, coldly-Christian lady shook my hand as she ground the words through her clenched teeth, "A few years ago we lost everything in a fire. What is it we did wrong?"

She had heard, but she had not understood. Jesus came to save her soul. She's mad that He didn't save her stuff.

I Corinthians 15:19 says, "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable." No wonder there are so many miserable Christians. No hope beyond this world. Going to church, praying to God, seeking after the same things the secularists’ desire, stomping and crying when we don't get our prayers answered.

"I hate you Dad. You never do what I want you to do."

It doesn't seem right that a loving God should be so heartless. But the Bible has a litany of verses speaking of the need to prepare ourselves for the next life. Mind if I share a few?

  • Luke 13:5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
  • Luke 12:20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee:
  • Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;
  • 1 Corinthians 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
  • Romans 8:35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
  • Romans 8:37-39 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

"In all of these things"...tribulation, distress, persecution, famine...the Christian's victory is in the battle. More than conquerors...that is what the life of Christ makes a true believer. The promise of Christianity is victory in the midst of defeat, hope in the midst of despair, life in the midst of death. The Words that He speaks to us are life... not a life style. He came so that we might overcome, not avoid, this life's trials.

I heard a wise man once say "God is in control of everything... but he doesn't control everything." Yep, he leaves much of this old world up to us.

I can't explain why God didn't save those miners, but I do know this. Those who knew Christ are with Christ now, and those who didn't, aren't. That is what Christianity teaches. That’s what I believe, that's what I share with others.

I like it here, in this world. I love my family, what I do, and the joys of life. But I don't fear death. I'm not anxious to go, but I'm prepared, because I understand that my end could come tomorrow.

We buried my 85 year old dad last spring, and I miss him. And although the reality of his death still stings, I'm glad he's not lying around sick anymore. I know he was prepared. Right now he’s probably mowing God’s lawn, chopping some firewood, playing his guitar.

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My four favorite words in the Bible are "It came to pass." Thank God, it didn't come to stay.

John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

Be of good cheer, Christian. There is a better world waiting. Keep your hand on the plough!

2006 Dave Daubenmire - All Rights Reserved

E-Mails are used strictly for NWVs alerts, not for sale


Coach Dave Daubenmire, founder and President of Pass The Salt Ministries www.ptsalt.com and Minutemen United www.minutemenunited.org, is host of the high octane Pass The Salt radio show heard in Columbus, Ohio.

In 1999 Coach Daubenmire was sued by the ACLU for praying with his teams while coaching high school in Ohio. He now spends his energy fighting for Christian principles in the public domain.

E-Mail: coach@ptsalt.com


 

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John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.