Let me say that I have the utmost respect for people who have spiritual relationships with a higher power. Mick Jagger once sang that “we all need someone we can lean on”, and as usual he’s right (you can’t always get what you want, right?).
What I find increasingly hard to stomach is the literal interpretation of scripture, and specifically the overt personification of that higher power and worse still, the notion that he/she/it/they have a grand plan for all of us, that everything from the outcome of major sporting events to the award for Best R&B/Rap Vocal Performance to how each and everyone of us will meet our own end is all part of a plan.
Poppycock. Or more accurately, BS
Bullshit on two counts. Bullshit insofar as I don’t believe it, and never will believe it. There’s no more a master plan up in the clouds than there’s one at the North Pole. I can’t conceive and don’t believe in a God with a checklist.
Are our spirits rewarded with a more peaceful afterlife if we’re generally good people during our physical life – hopefully. I think so. I believe so. I mean, I certainly hope there’s a nasty punishment of some sort waiting for the Bernardo’s and Russell Williams and (insert name of local sex offender)’s of the world. I just don’t believe in the Column A/Column B approach to the rewards of the afterlife:
“Ok, Hitler you’re over there, Billy Graham you’re in row 2, John Browne, line up behind Bill……i’m sorry, it looks like you stole a 6 pack and smoked some reefer at a Jackson Browne concert once……line up behind Hitler. And you ma’am…..oh oh, pre-marital sex. Line up in front of Hitler”
But isn’t it also kind of bullshit even if you DO believe in the grand checklist? Doesn’t it make you want to throw your hands in the air and say “SERIOUSLY??? You’re doing THAT to HIM? Today?”
These feelings aren’t simply part of my grieving process for Dad. I know the “why do bad things happen to good people” question is a very common part of loss. But that accident on Highway 63 this past week nearly sent me into a blind rage. A pastor? A 2 year old kid? A pregnant woman?
A 4 year old left to mourn both his parents and his little brother???? How does that make any sense.
Their deaths made me sad. Comments on Facebook and Twitter claiming that the “Master wanted to bring them home” or “they’re much happier now that they’re gathered together with Jesus” nearly sent me off the ledge. You honestly believe that God made a concious decision to destroy the lives of a family of good, loving people who prayed to the same God you do, probably harder, and gave their physical lives to doing his work?
I had a good friend killed a few years ago, and that Christmas some ignoramous whackjob actually suggested on Facebook that he was jealous that my friend was getting to spend Jesus’s birthday in Heaven. Are you kidding me? How obnoxious and insensitive to the feelings of his family.
It comes down to this – believe what you will. Pray to whom you will pray, grieve however you wish. But please stop trying to comfort those who are early in their grieving that this was simply God’s ticking off another box on his naughty and nice list.. Some of us are looking for a place to put our anger, and suggesting death is all God’s doing probably isn’t the best thing for our spiritual growth in the long term.