about this weekend 12.23.12
The argument goes something like this: If God is all knowing and knew that evil was going to happen before it happened, then he can’t be loving. If God couldn’t stop the evil, he must not be all-powerful. If he knew of the evil and had the ability to stop it and didn’t, then God cannot be loving. Therefore, because evil does exist, God does not.
These lines of thinking concerning evil can stir the mind and challenge the heart. In the end though, the problem of evil is still a problem largely left unresolved. Relegating evil to chemical imbalances, mental disorders, or even gun control helps to squelch talks of religion, but history proves over and over again how evil cannot be legislated or merely explained away.
Popular Atheist, Richard Dawkins, explains: “The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is at the bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good. Nothing but blind pitiless indifference. DNA neither knows nor cares. DNA just is, and we dance to its music.” How’s that for a total lack of hope?
But… what if there is a bigger story that we find ourselves in? What if God’s story was our story? What if the grand, epic elements of creation, fall, redemption, and restoration is what we live out every day. Sometimes the brokenness of the fall is the part of the story we find ourselves. Other times restoration is where our true hope comes from. What if evil is ultimately dealt with in seeing, understanding, and living out God’s epic story?
It seems our nation is caught up in the “fall” part of an epic story. The bright lights, candy canes, and gift wrapping of Christmas seems tainted this year by a small elementary school we all know as Sandy Hook. And yet… stories of good and stories of God are beginning to unfold. Redemption. Restoration. Among many endeavors, massive drives for teddy bears to Newtown, and a Twitter campaign of #26 Acts Of Kindness have begun to reveal light, restoration, hope, and God. Are these slight glimpses of His grand story, which simply cannot be contained nor defeated?
Do you see the story? Has God revealed His EPIC gospel in your life? The child in a manger is the main character. All hope and defeat of evil rests on this baby’s bold and daring move to enter into our story with the purpose of bringing us into His. Joy to the world, the Lord has come! Have you received this King? If not… how DO you deal with evil — especially this Christmas? Surely you’re not content with it being a mere dance of DNA.
On Sunday we’ll finish our two-week slow down into Mark 5:1-20. We’ll struggle with evil a bit more, and then we’ll turn all the attention on Jesus. There is great reason to celebrate. Our hope is built on nothing less than Jesus. Come Sunday and worship our battle-tested but victorious King. I’m anxious to gather with you and teach.
Christmas Eve Service
Monday, December 24 at 5:30pm
Please Note | There will be no Sunday service on December 30
In its place, we will have Church in a Bag at-home service kits available on December 9
Christmas Giving Options
Visit www.spendless2givemore.org | Food Collection for Family Life Restoration Center (lobby)
Financial Peace University | Class starting Monday, January 7 at 7:00pm
Weekly Giving | 12/16/2012