Ashes to Ashes?

Okay, today being Ash Wednesday, let’s talk about suffering and forgiveness.

Even those who sniff at what happened on Calvary will have to admit, whatever it was or whatever it meant, it happened at around this time of year and those who celebrate it do so at this time of year.

Usually when I talk on this subject, I ask everyone who has ever suffered unfair treatment to raise his hand.

This is not about illness, but about medical error. This is not about car wrecks, but about DUI. Ever suffer from either of those? This is not about miscarriages, but about forced abortions—I know you are out there. If you have never suffered from someone mistreating you, then I KNOW you know someone else who has so suffered. It is altogether common.

And today I begin addressing it and giving you tools to help yourself or help that acquaintance. Someone you know needs this post and the ones that will follow, so listen up and spread the word.

Why Does Suffering Come to Us?

1.  God. Common folks blame the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. (Why do we never blame any other presumed gods?!) But those who blame Him must first believe that He exists, so if you claim atheism or agnosticism, do NOT let it be because you blame what you consider a non-existent entity. Is that fair? Of course. 

So if we believe He exists, if we believe He is “up there” to be blamed, then the main way we can know anything about Him is to consult His writings.

In His writings, we find that He made everything very good. Not messed up, like it is now.

It. Is. Not. His. Fault.

2.  Man. Then God gave man choices, Life and Death, and we chose death. So here we are. He TOLD us, for our own good, what to do and we did the opposite, did not obey. Even today, even those who think maybe there is a God, even those who claim to love Him totally, do not always obey, choose death. Admit it.

And what a lie, today, that the only way to be pro-choice is to choose death! Really, we do NOT think!

However, the only way God’s creation can work well, is if every part is working together, just like a motor or a body. Anything wonky messes up everything. We must fall in line with His business plan if we hope to benefit from all His goodness.

Many people do not line up with Him. They line up with His enemy, instead. This is the constant battle between good and evil. Helping the hurting. Protecting the innocent. Guarding the airports. It is a constant battle—even inside ourselves—to make any good thing happen, because of the constant attack on all things good.

3.  Satan. According to the words of the God we are tentatively agreeing might exist, Satan hates God and all things good. So—he hates all creation. He personally hates every human being because they are all potential containers for God, his chosen enemy. He especially hates firstborn children, because they remind him of Jesus. Are you a firstborn? Ever notice anything?

To give himself significance, Satan thinks he must fight God. Steal! Kill! Destroy!—that is his motto. And his secret formula is to get man to join him. Anything he can do to trick man into cooperating with him, he will do, if he can. Anything to cause thievery, death, destruction will suit him just fine.

So, if you are not a Christian, you truly could say, “The devil made me do it.” But it doesn’t get anyone off the hook . . . .

Okay, all this was introduction. Tomorrow we begin the main deal and you won’t want to miss it, so sign up, so you won’t forget!

And share! Thanks!

See ya’ tomorrow.

Published by Katharine

Katharine is a writer, speaker, women's counselor, and professional mom. Happily married over 50 years to the same gorgeous guy. She loves cooking amazing homegrown food, celebrating grandbabies, her golden-egg-laying hennies, and watching old movies with popcorn. Her writing appears at Medium, Arkansas Women Bloggers, Contently, The Testimony Train, Taste Arkansas, Only in Arkansas, and in several professional magazines and one anthology.

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