The World’s All Right

Robert Service penned these uplifting words in his poem, “The World’s All Right“:

Be honest, kindly, simple, true;

Seek good in all, scorn but pretence;

Whatever sorrow come to you,

Believe in Life’s Beneficence!

 

The World’s all right; serene I sit,

And cease to puzzle over it.

There’s much that’s mighty strange, no doubt;

But Nature knows what she’s about;

And in a million years or so

We’ll know more than to-day we know.

Old Evolution’s under way —

What ho! the World’s all right, I say.

One of my favorite poems by Service by the way, although the “Cremation of Sam McGee” may be a very close second.

But I digress…

In his poetry, Service wrote about the world prevailing despite man’s best efforts to destroy it.  He was a church-going man but chose the words “Fate” and “Destiny” and even “Evolution” to describe the upturns and downturns instead of giving God credit for allowing events to happen according to His Perfect Plan.  That said, if you read this particular poem, “The World’s All Right“, there is indication he understood that there were “forces” beyond his comprehension that have always been in control, and will always be in control despite the evil wiles of mortal man.

I have thought a lot about world events lately.  There are some things I just can’t make sense of, much less come to grips with.  For instance:

  • Scientists have discovered that lobsters feel distress in being boiled alive in hot water so there are now countries who are putting laws into place to not cause those lobsters unnecessary stress and pain…yet those same countries have legalized abortion.
  • in Canada it is okay, in the name of religious freedom, to allow a kirpan (knife) to be worn by Sikh students, but Bibles are not allowed in schools.
  • Canada’s Prime Minister Trudeau applauds and celebrates all lifestyles but is antagonist to all those who may oppose those liberal views, especially Christians, even going so far as to block them from adopting children or getting government grants unless they declare to support abortion and the LGBTQ agenda.

The world’s all right?

I don’t think so!

“Serene I sit…”

I don’t think so!

Here is the dilemma I face.  I totally believe that God is in control.  I posted in 2016, 25 Encouraging Scripture Verses that Prove God is in Control that back up what I believe about God with regard to His Nature and His Sovereignty.  The thing is, with all the political, economic and social strife we have here in Canada and around the world, there are days I definitely lament about what is happening around me.  It is evil, plain and simple.  I struggle with why God would allow so much evil to run rampant in our world today.  If I were to also list all the natural disasters, shootings, stories of abuse, violence and depravity that seem to dominate the news reports lately, even over this past week, I could fill pages with just BAD NEWS.  Surely that kind of on-going evil in the world goes contrary to what a loving God would allow, right?

Many Christians fall away from the faith over this dilemma.  Others reject the Christian faith outright because they cannot reconcile evil and a loving God to co-exist.  Solving the contradiction between a loving God and the reality of evil is referred to as a theodicy (a vindication of the divine attributes, particularly holiness and justice, in establishing or allowing the existence of physical and moral evil.) 

C.S. Lewis, “The Problem of Pain“; and most recently Clay Jones, “Why Does God Allow Evil?: Compelling Answers for Life’s Toughest Questions“, have sought to provide answers to many of the questions I (and I suspect many of my readers) struggle with. 

I don’t claim to have it all figured out, but I do know that Scripture is clear:

  • God is Love and does not take delight in evil. (1 Corinthians 13:6)
  • Evil does not originate from God, but lies in the hearts of sinful, fallen men (and women). (James 1:13)
  • We are separated from God because of our sin and therefore we have need of a Saviour (Jesus) to rescue us from the consequences of our sin nature, thereby reconciling us to God.  (John 3:16-17)
  • The rise of evil should not come as a surprise to those of us who are Christ Followers.  (1 John 5:19)
  • There will come a day when the enemy (Satan) and all evil will be overthrown by Jesus. (Matthew 13:36-43)
  • There will come a day when God will judge each man (and woman) and He will create a “New” world free of evil, suffering and pain. (Romans 2:5-11 ; Revelation 21:1-8)
  • As Christians we are to turn from evil and do good. (1 Peter 3:11)
  • Prayer is our greatest weapon against evil in this world. (2 Corinthians 10:3-5 ; Ephesians 6:11-17)

The World IS all right because God is in control!  God’s got this!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Feeling Anxious?

We are twelve days into the New Year and I wonder whether I should go on a media fast.  It seems every time I tune into the news, there is fresh outrage at something our politicians have said or done.  Other victims of sexual harassment have come forward in Hollywood; another natural disaster has occurred, and the “peace and good will” that was celebrated just a few weeks ago has all but been forgotten.  What happened?

My twitter feed is filled with people venting about anything and anybody.  No one is safe from the online bullying.  I cringe when I read some of the comments and opinions leveled at politicians in the U.S., Canada and around the world.  Fear mongering is rampant.  I’m shocked at the profanity and derogatory slurs that are commonly spewed on social media.  What is wrong with people?

You will have noticed that I have been silent the last few weeks (at least from a writing viewpoint).  It seems that the January doldrums or “blues” have hit me especially hard this year.  I have several friends who have lost loved ones over the past few weeks, and several more that are facing serious health crises.  I have bought three condolence cards this past week alone.  That is depressing.  My Connection group leader asked us in church last Sunday, “Does it seem like there are a lot more prayer requests and concerns than usual to start 2018?”

Yep…and there is more to come.

It would seem I am not alone in this New Year’s malaise.  It’s easy to say, “do not be anxious…” (Philippians 4:6-7) but the reality is: people ARE ANXIOUS!

I was reminded today, as I have been reminded at the start of every New Year, that casting my cares once more upon the strong shoulders of my Saviour is a choice.  It’s not easy to let go of my anxiety.  At times I wear it like a security blanket.  I become more comfortable in my stress than letting go of it.  Weird but true.

I want to let go of my anxiety.  It’s a daily struggle.  I truly want that “peace that transcends understanding”.  There is no easy method for letting go of anxiety, but there’s a proven, tried-and-true equation to follow: I am presenting my petitions to God through prayer yet again.  Ceaseless, daily prayer going before the Father for wisdom and guidance.  I know He is able.  I know He is “my help in times of trouble” (Psalm 46:1).  I may not be a math genius, but that at least is a good formula to work on every single day.

 

 

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A Fresh Start

A Fresh StartIt is the last day of the year.  Here in Alberta the temperature gauge is set at -29 C and factoring in the wind chill, it’s -40 C.  That is blistering cold!  To make matters worse, I have been experiencing a head cold that has kept me house bound for the past week.  For a germaphobe like me, this just adds insult to injury.

I should be used to our winters but naively, I still hope that one year Canada will be spared the Polar Plunge and we will experience an “unseasonably warm” winter.  Going against political correctness, Global Warming doesn’t seem to apply to us here.

Still, as the New Year is only hours away now, it’s not the cold or my head cold that has me frozen.  It’s wondering what 2018 will be like?  What awaits me this year?  What can I look forward to, and what will stymie me in the pursuit of meeting personal goals and aspirations this year?

I don’t make resolutions, because I fail so miserably in keeping them.  Still, I believe it is important to plan ahead, think “one-day-at-a-time” and pray God’s Will be done in every decision.  He’s in charge.  Not me.  It is a good thing to remember that and repeat it daily.

God is in control.

Not me.

Repeat…

A New Year should be a time of reflection and renewal.  I like to start the New Year thanking the Lord for His mercies that are new EVERY morning.  In an often perplexing and out-of-control world, HE never changes.  He is CONSTANT.  That gives me great confidence about this upcoming year.  Whatever circumstance I find myself this year, He will never leave me or forsake me.

And again, when I find myself in a circumstance, pleasant or unpleasant, that God has orchestrated to bring Glory to HIM, I must always remember:

God is in control.

Not me.

Repeat…

Amen.

 

 

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