You remember in the movie “The Avengers,” when Loki, Thor’s adoptive brother and archenemy exclaimed to the Hulk: “I am a god and I will not be treated……”; then the Hulk snatches him off his feet and beats him on the cement floor like a Doberman shaking a hairless cat. Sometimes in life you feel like the canine, sometimes the cat. I can only tell you that the “beatings” tend to come more frequently when communication is poor. Your experiences could be different; but, if you examine all the circumstances, my point might be well taken. I had a coaching buddy in the past that used to gather his troops and remind them of this: “The responsibility in good communication falls on the listener.” Since the world has gone technical, maybe we have to replace the “listener” with the “reader” these days.
John writes that Jesus wanted us to read this:
“If I told you earthly things and you did not believe, how shall you believe if I tell you heavenly things?”
What appears to be a seamless question; is however, one that is filled with a myriad of needle-holes and held so tightly knit together by the threads of faith and hope. Why, does bad stuff happen, when apparently, the victims are so innocent. The only answer is that we live in a fallen world, one that we asked for, helped build in many ways; and though it does not seem fair, the idea of “Fair” is simply an idea devised for the grade school playground and fantasizing parents heavily involved in youth sports.
There really is no “good” answer for the “why do bad things happen to good people” questions. The excessively wise crowd tends to use it against God, others are just happy they escaped what they believe will eventually happen to all of us, if we’re not careful. And besides, we have FEMA to take care of us if it does; so in the meantime, let’s just redistribute something that belongs to someone else and move on.
Responsibility, on the other hand would tell you in the old school method, that you might need a better form of communication where the listener bears some burden. The implied notion here, is that both the asking of questions and the listening for the answers are the vital components. At the very least, when there is an honest dialog occurring with information passing in both directions, neither party is left to assume; which in itself, is the lowest form of communication. And, neither party is expecting someone else to fix their problems because there is both grace and art in problem solving.
You say, that you believe in God but you are not very good at prayer. You say, that you attend church and you pray at church once a week. You say, that I’m questioning your faith or belief by asking these questions. There was a ball player last year who had a girlfriend he’d never met, had only talked with her through the internet and she died; no wait, she didn’t die, she was a he; he or she or whatever were the facts, the situation seemed to have worked out really well, didn’t it? Shouldn’t we begin to ask questions about our communication skills?
I first met my wife in person, 43 years ago, here is what I said: “Hi.” I have progressed to longer, yet for the most part simple sentences over time; and, I’ve discovered listening can be very helpful, as well. My wife has been able to ascertain the greater meaning behind my small and simple words; and reply in ways that I can understand if given an appropriate amount of time to contemplate those responses. This has all resulted into a “relationship” of considerable understanding. Communication passing in two directions between two people, both of which are listening, as well as, speaking, not writing, texting, emailing, etc. There is an active attempt to know and understand one another in person. Communication doesn’t have to be a long elaborate prose in the beginning; allow it to grow over time
Do you think God, who sent us His son to reveal His very nature and then left us His Holy Spirit to help us, desires any less of a relationship forged by any less means? If we cannot believe this truth how will we ever understand the bad stuff and good people scenarios’. The heavenly things are going to take some time to understand. Getting hung up on that may keep you from simply understanding the earthly stuff which is more than enough; you might at least not fall for some Cyber-Mate. We can wait around to be the dog or the cat, or choose to be as Loki did, a god. We have a choice you know. You might start your prayer-life with a simple “Hello” and then allow the one who is called “The Mighty Counselor” the time to respond; contemplate on this a moment. Your other options are simply to wait around until the big green guy has his moment. Ain’t it so.