Sunday, May 8, 2011

Who's to Blame?

Brennan heading for the surf
My family just got back from was an amazing time together; our first real vacation with our 1 year old boy, Brennan. We were on the beach and were amazed at the fearlessness that "B" showed...his feet hit the sand for the first time ever, and he made a bee-line straight to the ocean. If I hadn't picked him up before he reached the surf, he'd have taken a nose-dive for sure.

Throughout the trip I noticed just how fearless and independent Brennan is. He would charge for the water, and I'd try to hold his hand to keep him safe, but all he wanted to do was push my hand away. Funny thing was, on the occasion he would take a face-plant or get knocked over by the unsuspecting wave, he would give me this look of panic that seemed to say, "Dadda, why didn't you save me?"

It dawned on me that so often, this is exactly how I, and many of us, tend to deal with God. We constantly push him away, trying to live under the illusion of control and independence, until the moment some tragedy hits us. Then we turn to God and ask "Why?" When all along, oftentimes, (not all the time), the tough times we experience are a direct result of our own dumb choices that had we walked closer with God and allowed Him to lead us in the first place, we might have avoided altogether.

This isn't to say that all our tests, trials and tragedies are avoidable if we just stay close to God; not at all. However, there are definitely some pains we experience that could be avoided...and even if it can't be avoided, how far from God do you want to be when that moment hits? The closer you are when it hits, the shorter the distance you have to run to Him for help.

"Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
     I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
     and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
     when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
     and the flame shall not consume you.
(Isaiah 43:1b-2)

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