SCRIPTURE: Job 38:1-3
Written by: Dr Conrade Yap
Date: November 24th, 2014
1Then the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm. He said: 2"Who is this that obscures my plans with words without knowledge? 3Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me."
I have been following with some interest an open letter online about why a former believer left her faith. It contains various reasons and faults with the Christian religion. Most of all, it stems from a tragic loss of her father, which was made worse by certain insensitive comments that tried to explain it all.
At the same time, I have just read through twenty-four earnest and honest reflections of faith from the standpoints of atheists, believers, agnostics, and various perspectives. Many of them had one thing in common: Faith Under Trial. Some of these respondents who had "left the faith" were raised in rather religious circumstances. They go to Church. They followed the educational processes. They essentially kept with their parental expectations. Until one day, the water bag broke. Skepticism gives birth to sarcasm, followed by plain dismissal of formerly held beliefs. All it takes is a shaking down of the nice image of a big and friendly God who is all loving and all providing. Whether it is cancer, loss of a family member or a friend, or some tragic circumstances, at some juncture, we will all intersect with the pain-and-suffering station of life. When that happens, questions turn into doubt; doubt turns to fear; and for self-professed "former" believers, fear coupled with frustrations soon turn one away from God.
- "God, where are You?"
- "God, why is this happening to me?"
- "God, are you there?"
- "God, hello? You there? Why don't You pick up my prayer?"
- "God, God, God? Why are You so quiet? I'll try again tomorrow."
- "God? You'll probably sleeping."
- "God? Are you real?"
- "God? Maybe there is no such thing as God."