I am Reading the Transforming Moment by James E. Loder where he relates how his wife, after he suffered injuries from a freakish accident, heard the words from out of the blue: Take the cup I have prepared for you.
Loder says her reference raises the question of theodicy: how can a good God allow the presence of evil…and that though he thinks the question presumptuous he knows we all ask it. So he promises to take it up later in his book.
Why Evil? I am now prompted to share my take on the answers, before I read his chapter 3. I want to take a sip from the theologian’s cup. Why evil?
First, to learn, understand and then grow~~into God’s earthly counterpart, who would have to know with conviction of experience, that there is something more desirable and all around better than merely the lack of suffering, or a state of painlessness. It has to do with our life in God and through God, our dynamic of being with God on into the future God created as ours, God’s and ours, utter reality~joy~and ours. Reading Corrie Ten Boom’s Hiding Place explains it well in true story narrative.
Second, why evil? Again, to learn, to understand and to grow into God’s earthly counterpart, in unity with and deepest friendship and kinship with God, we need a means to equality. Without equality there can be no real friendship. So God had to suffer to be friends with unequals and for us to be God’s friend we would have to understand his suffering.
The only way we could understand his suffering, right, we have to experience it. That is how we know God makes us one with him/her. We have full understanding of his life which is totally for us. Totally for us. And when we agree, yes, I want to be totally for you, God, we appreciate who we are marrying for eternity, the great creator, maintainer, transformer, lover, reality, joy, oneness and freedom.
Does the Bible tell me so? Yes, everywhere, but most particularly in God’s work on earth when Jesus walked and died and arose from death, and for each of us, as we walk and someday die but with knowing we are one with our friend our mate our greatest love, our brilliant eternal friend.
Prompted to reflect on my understanding of evil and of God’s care for us, care that appears careless, but in the end is his/her highest tribute and loveliest courtship of our eternal souls. He shares his whole knowledge of depths and the deepest depth, deeper than a cup.