Is God Abusive?

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If anyone attacks you, don’t for a moment suppose that I sent them…  Isaiah 54:17  The Message Bible

Years ago, when my oldest daughter was just barely two, she snuck out of the house, walked down the long driveway and headed toward the highway that ran through town.  This was a narrow, two lane highway with speed limits that most people ignored.  A man driving a truck saw her just in time, hit the brakes and screeched to a halt.  He scooped her up and began looking for me.  I was a block away looking for my daughter.  After he had deposited her in my arms, he drove off and I carried her home.

Once home, I promptly broke both of her legs.  I thought she needed to learn a lesson.   That highway is dangerous, sneaking out of the house is dangerous and breaking her legs seemed like a good way to instill these lessons in her and spare her from worse ones beyond our yard.

Hopefully, you know I didn’t break her legs.  We can all probably agree that that would be child abuse and worthy of prosecution.  I am a better mother than that.  I believe in using teachable moments to convey a truth to my children, but not abuse.   I wrote that because I grow weary of hearing God accused of doing similar things.  People saying that God put this hardship, this disease, this limitation on them to teach them a lesson or to spare them from greater harm.  I don’t buy that.  Does God use the hardships in our life to our good, teaching us lessons with them.  Yes.  But this verse clearly says that if anyone attacks you, don’t suppose that God sent them.  Sickness, emotional distress, hardships, diseases are not lessons given by God.  As limited as I am as a mother, even I know there are better ways than abuse to teach my children. Surely God, who is not limited as a Father, knows better ways too.  If He were the giver of disease and sickness and lack, why send Jesus to the cross to take it off of us?

Satan is the Father of lies and as such, has done a good job of spreading the lie that God puts bad things on us to teach us lessons.  God is the God of all comfort, not pain.  Let’s point the finger to the correct source of our hardships and limitations.

Father God, thank You for using the hard times of my life to teach me of greater truths.  Forgive me for times I have pointed my finger at You believing You to be the author of my pain.  I know better.  Thank You for providing Jesus to take care of my pain and give me the healing I need.  I receive Your healing touch over me now, in Jesus’s name.  Amen.

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