(picture taken from Spiritual Regurgitations)
I saw this cartoon on Robin Dugall’s blog and thought what a humorous, yet poignant, look at faith.
Back in university, I read a number of C.S. Lewis’ books. One of the questions he posed, I don’t remember which book it was in, was [my paraphrasing] “Would you still follow Jesus even if it meant that there was no heaven and no guarantee of receiving any reward?” Lewis’ point was that our motivation for following Christ should not be about what we get from God but because we love Him.
I know that we don’t do it intentionally, but so many times we interpret things going well with being in God’s will and having faith that he is in control. If things are going wrong, then we must not be trusting God. The problem with this kind of thinking is that it has its roots in narcissism. We think that God’s perfect will revolves around our comfort and our well being. It doesn’t. God perfect will revolves around Him and Him alone. Sometimes that means life for us, individually, won’t be all sunshine and rainbows. Sometimes that means there will be earthquakes and thunderstorms and, yes, pain.
How can we trust in a God, then, who allows for us to be put in uncomfortable and painful situations? We can trust him because he is sovereign and he is good. We can trust him because he is the only one who, in the end, can and will make everything right. We can trust him because in the end he will wipe away all our tears and restore us to be the images of himself that he meant us to be.
So, when things are going well, I have to remind myself that at anytime living by faith may require that my parachute strings be cut. While that may seem unfair and even cruel, living by faith also means that what happens on this side of eternity is a brief beginning. There is a glorious eternity that awaits us without pain and without suffering. In the meantime, we follow Christ in faith wherever that may be and through whatever circumstances there may be in order to be a part of God’s redemptive work in the lives of those around us and creation.
- What do you think of the cartoon?
- How do you live out this kind of faith personally, as a family and corporately in community?
- How do you help children understand that living by faith does not equal living comfortably and safe?