What’s a feller to do?
Sam had worked hard for 40 years at the same company. Upon retirement, he sold his house for a
healthy profit and moved to a small condo in Florida, with a deep satisfaction
that his faithfulness and diligence had paid off. No one in his family had ever been able to
finish college and hold a job for any length of time. His extended family all seemed trapped in the
quagmire of loafing and sponging, so retiring with money in the bank seemed
Then came the texts and voicemails:
“Dad, I know I haven’t called in 4 months, but my
car is in the shop. I need $300 or I
won’t be able to go to work.”
“Uncle Sam, we’re about to lose our house, could
you float us a loan? I know it’s a big
favor, but my wife said you were a generous man.”
“Grandpa, sorry we don’t have time to come see
you, but there’s a really neat baseball camp I could go to if you’ll send dad
“Dad, I can’t believe you’re ignoring my
calls. Don’t you care that we are in a
Sam had the power to help these folks, but helping them
might actually perpetuate their dependency.
And nobody seemed to have time to just call and talk or come down for a
visit. What’s a feller to do? If he helps them on their terms they will
just expect more. If he doesn’t help,
they will accuse him of being uncaring.
God is in a similar situation. He is all-powerful and He owns everything,
but He is also bound to principles. He cares,
but He can’t bow to man-made morals and values. This inflexibility causes many
to consider Him harsh and judgmental. So,
what is God to do?
God has gone to great lengths to communicate His love. He created an earthly body and He lived among
us. He demonstrated love, mercy, truth
and justice. He went about doing
good. People followed Him for his great
teaching. They loved it when he did
miracles and fed them. They flocked to
him for healing and were wowed when He raised people from the dead. They were in awe when he calmed the seas and
walked on water. Everybody was a
“believer” and wanted a piece of Him when He was blessing them. But when it came to loving Him back, that
didn’t go to well. Eventually they
nailed Him to a tree. They wanted the
God of gifts but they detested the God of accountability. They wanted stories that explained life, but
they rejected the call to live a life regulate by God’s immutable laws.
So, what is a good, loving God to do? He can’t change who He is. He can’t pretend like we humans do. God already did exactly what He was supposed
to do. He demonstrated His power and
love and then patiently waited for those who would realize that this
all-powerful Creator wants a loving relationship with them. For centuries people have thrown fits and
insisted on doing life their way – blaming God for many self-inflicted
problems. But God just continued
being good, loving and patient.
I wonder how many people talk to God just because they love
Him? When was the last time you asked God how He was feeling? When was the last time you prayed to spend
time with him? Those who venture into a real relationship will experience a
love that will take them to a place where they are no longer seeking God for
what he can do for them, but they are seeking God for who He is.