Those trending topics range from silly (Things I’m Scared Of, for example) to stargazing (when I wrote this, Dear Taylor Swift was trending; I’m not kidding) to the latest news items.
But recently, I was astonished to find Thanking God was trending. And not just for a few minutes, but for more than a day.
Just as interesting were the ‘tweets’ on this subject. Some were amusing, such as thanking God for Justin Bieber. But others used the topic in startling ways.
One man wrote “There is nothing more selfish than the privileged thanking God while so many starve and die terrible deaths as their God does nothing.”
Then there was the person who typed “Thanking God for AIDS, hunger, and SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). Some top managerial decisions there, man.”
These tweets address an age-old challenge for anyone who believes in a creator: if this creator is good, as Christians and so many others claim, why is humanity stalked by AIDS, hunger, SIDS, and ‘terrible deaths’ – and why has God apparently done nothing about it?
Before I address this, please know that people who claim they can fully, credibly answer these questions are bigger fools than Charlie Sheen in his worst moments. The Bible addresses the mystery of these questions like this: “I [God] don’t think the way you think. The way you work isn’t the way I work.”
That said, is God really doing nothing about starvation? Aren’t governments, churches, aid groups, and others rallying to do all they can to help in the horn of Africa, despite opposition from the terrorists who control part of Somalia? If you claim that’s not God at all, but just charitable people/institutions, can you prove it? Just as important, are YOU part of God’s solution in Africa?
As for terrible deaths, while I wouldn’t dream of trying to explain most of them, how about those committed by evil people? Does it really make sense to blame God when a sick, twisted man in Norway uses God’s gift of freewill to commit 60-plus murders?
It’s these kinds of horrifying events that truly, truly test that gift.
Serious Christians know there’s another such event: the death of Jesus, whom they (and many others) believe is the son of God.
Serious Christians know Jesus died to pay for the wrong things we’ve done and the right things we haven’t done. What if God prevented the Roman authorities of the day from carrying out that murder? Even Jesus knew it shouldn’t be stopped. He told His followers that He “didn’t come to be served but rather to serve and to give my life to liberate many people.”
So, is thanking God a waste of time (and Twitter space), or does it make sense? Post your thoughts below and let’s have a conversation.