Suffering defines this world. Suffering is the always there panic that we are enduring suffering or that it is yet to befall us. No one escapes. Olympian bodies will grow old, the dripping wealthy can not pay the price of immortality, and hiding in safe places can not barricade suffering.
It is the norm that people die and the world does not blink. Right now a child dies of starvation, a woman is raped, a man loses his job, and a lion captures its prey. And upon those words, we each put up the defense of “not me.” However, a certainty of life is that death awaits us.
Your child dies, her husband leaves her, I have cancer, and the world goes on with its day. Hide from it, deny it, tell yourself that you are healthy, wealthy, good, and safe, but pain and suffering are a part of your life, or they wait for you.
“The total amount of suffering per year in the natural world is beyond all decent contemplation…some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but pitiless indifference.” says Richard Dawkins.
The Western culture listened to Dawkins and bought in hook, line, and sinker. We preach it in our schools, purchase materials for the here and now, and live up life because that is all we’ve got.
There is no meaning. Do what feels good. There is no right and there is no wrong. Run from suffering at all costs because it is just your unlucky fate. Conclude that life is here and now. The handicap, those doomed to genocide, the poor, and the sick, crawl on top of them and claim your life. Live for yourself. There is no meaning. Die.
But the human spirit cries out, we must press on. There is good and there is evil. There is a purpose for humanity. Why and where does this voice arise from?
It comes from Creation, it comes from our core, it comes from our purpose. We were made in the image of God. And God says HOPE. He says that there is only one other option. And that is HOPE. Hope that all the wrongs will be undone. All of evil and pain and suffering will be crushed and we can live eternity in perfection.
Chose this day who you will serve, but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.