Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Contemplating Atheism

When I think of the disgusting and horrible things that happen in the world, especially involving children, I question how could there be a God?  The suffering and agony that humans go through from other humans is too much to handle.  It’s unbearable.  It’s an awful reality to accept that there are appalling things that occur around the world that we are not even aware of!

How could God allow such things to happen?  How can an almighty God allow abuse, torture, beatings, blood and the most unimaginable things ever?  What possible plan or purpose could there be for this?  How could God permit this… how could God be omnipresent and not stop these things from happening?  If I could loudly scream here at the top of my lungs:  WHY, WHY, WHY?

It’s a very lonely and dark, awful place to dwell thinking about all these unanswered questions and thoughts.  Dwelling in these thoughts gives me hopelessness, fear and depression.  I think they are valid questions that deserve an answer and explanation, yet I have no answers or explanations.

Contemplating atheism, I hit a wall where I don’t want to turn to God.  I get angry, sad and confused.

It’s then that I am reminded of something that God did in my life.  My hope, faith and proof that God became real in my life:  God saved my Dad.

My father was an alcoholic and drug user that at one point abandoned us.  My mother was also very unstable in the situation. It was a very rough upbringing of verbal and physical abuse and dealing with an alcoholic father.

When I was about eight years old, my mom would take my sister and me to prayer services where the staff would gather in a circle on our knees to pray to God.  Although I really hated these prayers services, I decided to participate on several occasions to pray.  Particularly on one occasion, I remember vividly, I gave it all I had in me and prayed on my knees, begging and crying to God to save my dad.  I loved my father very much.  I didn’t want him to die from his alcohol and drug problem. I felt like something would happen to him. I hated that my parents would fight. I prayed to God that my Dad would give up alcohol and drugs and surrender his life to God.

God heard loud and clear.  My dad surrendered his life to God and he no longer is an alcoholic and his life doesn’t depend on drugs anymore.  He is actively part of a church and dedicates every single morning to personal devotions with God and reading scripture.  He is a changed man and it’s my Dad’s example that brings me back to God.

I believe in my heart that God created the world, as the Bible says, and that Jesus died on the Cross for our sins.

I believe the relationship between God and the human race is that of a child with an adult. As a child, I never understood my parent’s restrictions and teachings of life.  It didn’t make sense and there was a desire to rebel.  Now as an adult and as a mom, their rules make sense. I feel the same is with life and God.  We have free will and the consequences, our own, and the whole idea of God doesn’t make sense.

When I ponder atheism, I still wonder about the horrible crimes of this earth. Will the people who caused horrendous crimes and evil-doing just get away with it? Are there no consequences? That’s it?  It’s over?  Just like the same question can be asked about God of what possible plan could there be with life, the same question I have to atheism, what then?

One of the human traits I despise the most is selfishness. It is hard for me to accept that is a flaw and it’s embarrassing to admit that I can be selfish sometimes but it’s true. However, I strive not to be selfish. I don’t want my son to grow up to be selfish either.  Pride can rip at my heart and build a wall to live a life without God and not needing him and surrendering to him and I don’t want that.  It doesn’t give me peace.

I decide against atheism because I truly, with all my heart, find that there is more to this life than just the human race and universe.  Although I have the same questions and concerns as atheists, especially regarding people and children who have suffered and been killed innocently, I choose to put all those feelings, life’s burdens, obstacles and fears to God and surrender that I don’t have the answers and to just trust God.  To deny God’s existence to me is on the contrary, unrealistic.

I’ve read where God is said to be a myth.  To me, God gave life.  Life is real, I see it, I feel it, I hear it; and if I put my hand on my chest and focus for a second, can feel my heartbeat.  It’s a heartbeat that outside of my control will have an end one day…and that to me is, undeniable.

Isaiah 40:28-31. (NIV)

28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.

29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.

30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;

30 but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.