This morning I read a post written by a mom of 2 from Texas to explain why she is raising her children without God. (Why, you ask, would I read such a thing? Because I think it’s good to try to understand where others are coming from, especially those who see the world very differently. The best way to do that is to listen to them explain themselves.)
Her words leak raw and sometimes bitter, and honestly, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. Much of what she wrote resonated with me. Not because I’m raising my children without God (I simply cannot be an atheist, in spite of my doubts and my questions), but because she describes some of the things I’ve struggled to reconcile about Him. Consider the following, from her article:
God is not fair.
If God is fair, then why does he answer the silly prayers of some while allowing other, serious requests, to go unanswered? I have known people who pray that they can find money to buy new furniture. (Answered.) I have known people who pray to God to help them win a soccer match. (Answered.) Why are the prayers of parents with dying children not answered?
If God is fair, then why are some babies born with heart defects, autism, missing limbs or conjoined to another baby? Clearly, all men are not created equally. Why is a good man beaten senseless on the street while an evil man finds great wealth taking advantage of others? This is not fair. A game maker who allows luck to rule mankind’s existence has not created a fair game.
God does not protect the innocent.
He does not keep our children safe. As a society, we stand up and speak for those who cannot. We protect our little ones as much as possible. When a child is kidnapped, we work together to find the child. We do not tolerate abuse and neglect. Why can’t God, with all his powers of omnipotence, protect the innocent?
I think these questions have good answers (and I think some of the answers we don’t have, and maybe couldn’t understand even if we were given them). But these are the questions that led me to doubt God’s goodness (see yesterday’s interview clip) when I was confronted with two children with medical/special needs and spent so much time at a children’s hospital. (Think about that phrase for a minute: children’s hospital. There are enough children who need one to necessitate an entire hospital dedicated to children. *sob*) It is difficult (impossible) to trust someone who isn’t good. So this is an essential piece of faith – the goodness of God.
Tell me how you would respond to these statements. Do you ever read what people say with whom you disagree? Why or why not?