Monday, March 24, 2014

God's Not Dead

Deuteronomy 31:8...More at

When I first created this blog, it was meant to share my style choices, my favorite beauty secrets, the occasional recipe -- that kind of thing. I didn't really want it to become a blog where I was constantly sharing my thoughts and opinions about life, not because there's anything wrong with that, but because I don't find myself particularly funny or feel that I have this great thing that I need to share. It was more so to be a place where I shared the things I loved, style suggestions, and the like, but this has been on my heart.

I was a little hesitant to share this, but this past weekend, I went with my parents to see God's Not Dead. It is about a college student who is forced to stand up to his atheist philosophy professor when asked to write on paper that God is Dead. The student, a devout Christian, challenges his professor because he can't and won't betray his faith. He is given 3 20-minute segments to explain how and why God does in fact exist, and must persuade his classmates in order to pass the class.

There are many other side-stories that all wrap up in to one, but it would take a lot of paragraphs to explain it all. But there was one very poignant moment at the very end of the student's lectures in which he asks the professor, "Why do you hate God?" The professor is baffled, but then goes on to say that he hates God because he took everything away from him -- his mother lost a battle to cancer when he was only 12. The student responds to this statement with: How can you hate something you don't believe in?

I've grown up my whole life in a Christian home. We went to church on Sundays, I went to youth groups and bible schools, and I continue to read the Bible and practice my faith. But I'm also embarrassed to admit that my faith is not as strong as it should be. As I've mentioned briefly before that my grandmother has ALS, a disease that traps the victim in his or her own body. As much as it hurts to say it, it is virtually a death sentence. My grandmother and I are incredibly close, and while 2.5 years into the disease she is still persevering, it is hard to sit back and watch the disease take its course. Which is why I often ask, "Why, God?" 

You see, my grandmother has been a woman of incredible faith, and even still she studies the Bible, asks her preacher questions about things she's interested in knowing more about, and does not blame God for the disease. Yet I struggle with that, much like the professor in God's Not Dead. Though I know that we have free will, and that we are free to make choices in our lives, it is often times hard for me to understand why diseases like ALS or cancer overcome some who have the strongest of faiths. My other grandmother has Parkinson's Disease, so every where I turn, a neuron disease is affecting someone I love. She, too, is dedicated to her faith, and yet I struggle as to why these things happen.

There have been several verses that remind me that I am but nothing and that I need to put my faith in the Lord, especially in my times of trouble. So often, we quote Philippians 4:13, but as of late, I find Philippians 4:10-13 to be most appropriate: I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. 11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Another verse I find appropriate is 2 Corinthians 4:16-18:  So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

I've realized that my going to see that movie was not coincidence. It challenged my faith and reminded me that I instead of being angry in times of trouble, I need to instead pray.

This has weighed heavy on my heart to share since Saturday evening when I left the theater -- so hopefully this will affect someone the way it affected me.

I will leave you with this last verse: He will cover you with His feathers and under His wings you will find refuge. -- Psalm 91:4
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