Is God Good?
Apr 30, 2010
“God is great. God is good.” So begins a children’s prayer. Most of us are pretty comfortable with the first sentence. It’s the second one that trips us up. God is good. Do you believe that? Really? And I don’t mean up in your head, along the lines of, “Eating lots of leafy vegetables helps to fight colon cancer.” That may in fact be true, but it’s not the kind of truth that liberates the soul. Is God really good?
If you’re a Christian, you’re supposed to affirm this, right? But, if we’re honest, we wonder. We know that He’s good to many people, many times. He’s been good to us, at least sometimes. But can we really, truly, all the way down to the soles of our feet, really rest in God’s goodness—all the time?
Deep down, most of us carry around a lump of doubt about whether God’s plans and intentions for us can truly be trusted. I mean, if we surrendered our lives to Him fully—let Him call the shots with our finances, with our careers, with our kids, with our use of free time or any time for that matter—what would happen? We’re not sure we’d really like where that would take us. Not that God is a sinister scientist, out to torture us. Rather, we’re pretty sure that God’s ways and His idea of “the good life” are probably closer to a bowl of spinach than a bowl of ice cream. You may learn to swallow it down, but deep down you’d rather be doing something else.
Of course this is the same lie the serpent told our first parents, Adam and Eve. “You can’t trust God to be truly good- His idea of fun and joy is off-base. You can find life on your own.” They believed the lie, sadly learning the hard way that Eden was, in fact, good, as were God’s ways and God Himself. But the lie is still being whispered in countless ways, by a world that entices us, an enemy that still breathes distortions, and our own hearts that look for life almost anywhere but God.
It’s a huge question, and I’d invite you to sit with God on this one. Is God good? Can you trust Him? And what would it look like if you believed it more fully than you do right now?