I can’t fix it, but he can

I’ve been struggling with something, and maybe you can relate. See if this sounds familiar: You get online or watch the news on TV, and all the stories and visuals of misconduct, mayhem and mob mentality leave you feeling disturbed and frustrated. But not just because it’s all so wrong but because you feel like you need to do something about it. You need to fix it, stop it, change the whole trajectory of the country. Am I right?

But it has occurred to me lately…finally…that I am not God. Okay…let me rephrase that. It has occurred to me that BECAUSE I am not God, I cannot fix it, stop it, or change the trajectory of the country. I can do my part for my little corner of it, but the rest of it is simply beyond my control. And just as importantly, not my responsibility.

When practically every bad thing in every part of the world is being recorded and reported on and put in front of me on my TV or computer screen, it can be hard, at least on a subliminal level, not to conclude that I should be involved in righting these wrongs. But does this betray an inflated sense of self-importance and a lack of proper trust in God?

I don’t believe God requires or expects me to respond with anything more than prayer to most of the specific injustices, tragedies, and unrighteous deeds of corrupt and debased individuals or groups that I am made aware of every time I get on Twitter or check the news. I do believe he wants me to trust that he is working in these situations…that he is not merely observing it all and feeling disturbed and frustrated. Because he IS God he has complete control over every single thing that happens in the universe, and because he created us and loves us he is acting in it for our good.

I wonder how often, after asking God to intervene…to right the wrongs and help the hurting…we go on as if we hadn’t. As if he’s not going to do anything. Is that not an affront to him? How would you feel if your young child comes home from school crying, disheveled, and bleeding, tells you about a bully on the bus who pushed her down and kicked her in the face, asks you for help, then goes off and tries to bandage her own wounds while continuing to cry because she’s sure she’ll be a victim of his again in the morning? In other words, she doesn’t trust you to act on her behalf…to answer her “prayer.”

Now I realize, of course, that God doesn’t rescue everyone from evil, suffering, and injustice, but why he doesn’t is a topic for another post. Surely, though, he is at work all over the world and is not deaf to our prayers.

And we are more likely to receive the help and healing we ask for if we truly believe that.

When he entered the house, the blind men came to him, and Jesus said to them, Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to him, “Yes, Lord.” Then he touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith be it done to you.” And their eyes were opened. – Matthew 9:28-30a