(This post actually includes two points: The root of our problems, and our reluctance to recognize and deal with it; and God's sovereignty in our suffering, and blase life situations)
We recently watched this nearly perfect movie again.
It is a really fun movie to watch, and it gives an opportunity to talk about relationships. The relationships between men and women, and the biblical requirement of purity before marriage, and the situations we allow ourselves to be in that weaken our ability to resist temptation (the couple in the movie get engaged while lying naked together under a blanket). Also the relationships between parents and children, both young and old. The main character, Tula, comes to realize the wonderfulness of having "meddling" parents/family.
The father of the household is a really fun guy; very greek of very greek. He challenges his children and everyone who comes into his house to give him a word, any word and he will tell them how this word originated with the Greek. One of the children in his daughter's carpool thought she had him when she gave him the word kimono (from the Hawaiian). He did it, though.
This morning, on my way to work, I was listening to Truth for Life with Alistair Begg (http://www.truthforlife.org/site/PageServer), who is doing a study on Biblical characters used by God. Yesterday and today it was about II Kings 5:1-14. This is the story of the healing of Naaman. I was thrilled because we had just talked about this Sunday in Sunday School. This is currently my favorite story in the Bible!
At any rate, in today's talk, Alistair made the point that Naaman's problem was the problem of sin, and that God has the solution. Any of the world's problems is a problem with sin, and Jesus Christ is the solution! 'Aving a bit of depression are we, because of debt? Maybe then, you need to repent of your greed, and trust Jesus to wash this sin from your 'eart, then, eh? 'Aving trouble loving your 'usband, because 'e dusn't seem to understend you the way you'd like, eh? Maybe then you need to be on your knees, repenting of your foolish pride and asking God, the maker of your soul to give you joy as you submit to your 'usband, eh? Are you lonely and afraid? Pride, self-suffinciency.
Give me a problem, any problem, and I can tell you how the root of it comes from the sin, and how, ultimately, Jesus Christ is the solution, the only true solution to the problem.
How often do we tuck Jesus away and try to solve our own problems and the problems of others with whitewash? Depression got you down? Seek debt relief and smile! Don't love or feel loved by your husband? Teach him the five love languages, and smile! Are you lonely and afraid? You've got to love yourself, and build your confidence before you can love someone else! Smile!
Where is Jesus in this?
In our Sunday School class, we looked more at the little Hebrew slave girl. You know, the one who was wrenched from her mother's arms and her father's house by the marauding Arameans?
Do you believe that God has plans for good for you? Do you believe that God is in control of every thing that happens to you? Do you believe that God can, will, and does work everything together for good for the one who loves the Lord; the one called according to His purpose?
Then, what about this slave girl? She was torn by foreign invaders from the safety of her home and family. We are unaware of all that happened to her and all that she suffered. All of this looked bleak and bad. Did her circumstances change? We do not know. We have no basis to speculate that she ever returned home. We have no reason to believe that she was ever thanked or rewarded for her kindness. We have no reason to believe that she grew up to have a home of her own, a husband, or children.
What good ever came from her life? What good did God work through her circumstances? Naaman came to believe and trust in the only true God. Today, salvation came to his house.
Why are you where you are? Why does your neighbor live next to you? Why does that girl check groceries at the store where you shop? Do you believe that you are called according to His purpose? Do you believe that He works all things together for good for you?