29 March 2023 God the Gentleman (free will quandry)

Hello to you. How is your today going? I am doing ok. My thoughts are on my quandry about God and free will. I brought this up last night with the ladies in my Bible study. The answers that came from them were all similar. God didn’t make us to be mindless drones and followers of his word. God is a gentleman who gives us choice – to choose to believe in him or not. Nothing is forced. Emily, the leader of the study gave me a good example. She said imagine you have this friend who every time they go out they do the same thing. Like getting drunk and being miserable for it. You know this about them and suggest they not do it but ultimately it’s their choice. Emily was kind of tackling the all knowing God in her example. God knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows what we are going to do and can put other options and choices – better choices- before us but ultimately we make the final call. When I think of the times I’ve been through with my mental health I got myself in a tunnel. I couldn’t see the better choices because I lost control of my ability to see them. In the Christian community they might say the enemy had hold of me.

I read this morning that the Nashville shooter had been suffering. When we are suffering and don’t have faith and trust in God and the enemy is “driving the car” we make, in her case, fatal choices despite what God wants for us.

I am still struggling with the issue of God allowing mass shootings to go on. I feel like there is a lesson we are supposed to be learning and we are not learning it. For example there is no red flag law in Tennessee to prevent troubled people from purchasing weapons or keeping current guns in their possession. May be this case is another example that lawmakers need to make better choices too. Something like red flag laws should be federal law not just up to each state. That’s just my opinion of course. There is just too much inconsistency when it comes to guns in America.

So I’m glad I was able to talk to Emily and the other ladies in Bible study last night about Gods Grace when it comes to tragedy. There have been all kinds lately to include weather related. The people in Mississippi who lost their lives and or homes to tornados. I wonder what God wants us to learn about that or is it beyond God and a combination of man -made factors – climate change for example. I don’t think anybody is completely ready for something like a tornado. I know when we had one when we lived in Texas it took us by surprise even with the weather service warnings! We were grateful for our lives being spared and minimal damage to our property. It’s got to be hard to have everything destroyed like happened to the already poor in Mississippi. What is Gods plan for these unfortunates? I know after the tornado we had it pulled all of us neighbors closer together.

At the bottom of all tragedy, no matter what kind it is, what good can come from it? What can we learn about God and ourselves? We can choose to crumble or learn and rise above it wiser. It really helped me to hear fellow believers explain God as being a gentleman. We are given a choice and we don’t have to wait for tragedy, reaching our bottom in life, to choose Gods will for us. With these tragedies we are seeing the perpetrators are self will run riot. In cases like these mass shootings, fatally so. Passion takes over reason. I wonder if that shooter knew she was unconditionally loved by God if she still would have gone through with her plans.

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