Warning: rambling, incoherent post ahead – I’m writing this while I have “the Funk.” Not the Bootsy Collins, Parliament Funkadelic Funk, but the “Why is it I exist again?” Funk.
Indirect consequences are hard to understand – bad things happen every minute of every hour of every day in every village, town, city, state, nation, region… sometimes they make ‘sense’ to us through whatever lens we use to interpret life’s happenings, good & bad. A lot of the time they don’t. When bad things happen for which we see no ‘direct’ cause, especially to people that don’t ‘deserve’ it (as though there are some that really, truly should be afflicted with cancer. Loss of loved ones. Freak accidents. Bad news. you get the picture.) we want to know the WHY. Why is this happening?
It becomes a focal point for us to work through what we believe about God – & often our ideas of who God is & what He should be doing… because we view God as the One who saves us from bad stuff. We obey Him, we serve Him, because its like a ‘get out of trouble’ card or an exemption from the suffering that plagues the rest of humanity. We see it as “we do our part, obey, & then He does His part: provide, protect, avenge, heal, restore, etcetera.” When life doesn’t happen like that, we wonder what we’re doing “wrong.” Or what others have done wrong. Or why God is seemingly sleeping on the job, allowing, or even worse, causing bad stuff to happen. Or at least not intervening when He could have.
This is where indirect consequences come in. And a misunderstanding about God & His nature. And the temporary, finite world that we live in. And what love is.
Here’s my take on the WHY or origin of Bad Things:
And in the middle of it, God did not & has not abandoned us – from the beginning, He has been the solution to our sin – & He purposefully intersected humanity with the Cross of Christ – which changes everything, not just in the temporary finite world we live in, but for eternity.
He never leaves or abandons us – He stays with us even when we’re in the middle of what seems to be the pit of despair – He is our Comfort, our Shelter, our Rock, our Fortress, our Hope, our Inheritance. He has placed Himself squarely in the middle of life’s bad things – God WITH us. Immanu’El.