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If God is good, why is there so much evil in the world?

This is one of the questions we are frequently asked by those who are more of a skeptic in the matter of faith in God or by those who do not pass over the church threshold very often. If God does exist, why doesn’t He put an end to evil? If God is almighty, why doesn’t He have the power to set things straight so that nobody would suffer anymore?

I would like to answer this question by telling you about what happens to me as a father in my relationship with my little girl, Sofia, who is almost 2. It is often good to compare our relationship with God to that with our parents, in order to understand more easily what happens to us.

Sofia is now at the age when she can walk very well, she can even run, she climbs everything, she talks, she pulls everything she can get her hands on, she disassembles, she dismantles, she explores everything inside and around the house. Sometimes she falls or gets hurt while playing and that is why I have to watch her most of the time. Sofia is a bit spoiled and she has a personality which becomes more prominent by the day, and that is why we come to “quarrel”. She wants to climb the chair in order to reach the window, she wants to climb the furniture, she wants to touch the stove, or play with the plug, hold her hands under the running water at the sink, etc.

I admonish her and tell her not to do that, otherwise she will get “a bump”. She stops for a little while, listens to me and a few moments later she tries to do it again. I admonish her once more. She stops again feeling a bit ashamed, listens to me carefully and then she tries to do it again. As my words don’t get through to her, I punish her by spanking her and then I emphasize once more that she is not allowed in that place, otherwise something bad will happen to her. It is only then that my admonishment takes effect… although sometimes it happens that she is not afraid even after that and she tries to do it again. That is how I understood that she is not conscious of the danger she exposes herself to, even if I try hard to explain to her.

But sometimes it is too late for me to help her and she falls, gets hurt, hurts herself and starts to cry. She touches the hot pan on the stove stealthily and she gets burned and then she really understands what her mother and I tell her about that place being “ouch” and that she is not allowed over there. She remembers where she got hurt and she no longer has the courage to play over there, moreover she even says all by herself “no, no, no…!” and then she walks away.

I love Sofia very much and I want all the best in the world for her and I wish she would never get hurt, but though I can’t tell her what’s wrong and right all the time, I can’t admonish her every second. I want her to do what’s right, not because I told her so, but because she realized that thing will harm her now or later. I don’t want her to do what’s right due to constraint, because I can see her, and do what’s wrong when she’s by herself. Based on the experience she has achieved until now by playing, on the advice I have been giving her until now and with my help, I want her to manage to keep away from bad and always do good and have a beautiful life.

Thus, the title question related to my relationship with Sofia would sound like this: “If I do exist as a father, then why does Sofia make mistakes?” if Sofia makes mistakes, it doesn’t mean that I want her to make mistakes, or that I don’t exist, but only that I want her to learn to do what’s right willingly.

It’s the same thing in our relationship with God. He wants us to do only good things, and He gives us His help in order for us to do that, but He can’t constraint us, because otherwise He would annul us as individuals, He would turn us into little robots which respond to orders, or into slaves who do what’s right unwillingly and not due to their own conscience. Although He could protect us from suffering all the time, God lets us fall and get hurt sometimes, in order for us to understand from our own experience that defying His Will brings suffering both to us and to those around us. God allows suffering in our lives so that we can see that sin (a wrong choice of our will) only brings us more torment, instead of joy.

But we have to make a clear specification: God allows us to suffer partially and not the way we should as a consequence of our sins….On the one hand we realize why God accepts suffering in the world, but on the other hand we don’t understand his entire plan.

Undoubtedly, God has a plan. As long as God knows everything, He is not surprised by the presence of sin and evil in the world, which bring so much suffering. But if God knows everything since eternity, then He is perfectly capable of using the suffering in the world in order to accomplish His salvation plan. The best and simplest example is Christ, Who suffered in the hands of some evil people. Through His suffering on the Cross and through His Resurrection, we have the certainty of victory over death. It was God’s plan since eternity for Christ to die for our sins, although He was crucified by some people just like us. This means that God included evil and suffering into his salvation plan as a reality in order to fulfill His Will. This doesn’t mean that God is the author of evil, but only that He is above all things and He can even use suffering in order to accomplish a greater good.

If God must stop all evil in the world, then He must put an end to all evil. This means that the killer must be prevented from killing and the thief must be prevented from stealing. But evil firstly begins from the thought and then it would mean that God should prevent us even from thinking sinfully. Thus, in order for God to put an end to evil and suffering, it means He should annul people’s ability to choose and to do what they want. So if God put an end to all evil, would we be free anymore?

Here is in brief why God allows us to suffer:

  • God accepts for evil to happen for reasons that we partially know and on the other hand that we don’t fully understand
  • He uses suffering to teach and discipline people
  • If God chose there were no more suffering in the world, then He would eliminate people’s power to choose according to their will and nature, and thus He would degrade or minimize them, by not trusting them that at some moment they will be able to do the good by themselves
  • He allows suffering in order to prevent even greater future suffering
  • Suffering is a consequence of sin and sin is a choice of our free will
  • Suffering works as a warning for those who intend to do more evil in the future
  • The suffering caused by our bad deeds shows how good God’s commandments are, if we abide by them
  • Suffering breaks us apart from our body and lifts our mind to God. It reminds us that we are as material as the created world and as spiritual as the Uncreated God
  • Suffering reminds us of death, death of the Heavenly Kingdom, the Heavenly Kingdom of our sins, and the sins urge us to repentance, and repentance urges us to change and to good deeds
  • Suffering reminds us that we can’t do anything by ourselves, but only together with the others and with God.

(Claudiu)

Translated by Claudia

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Endeavor

I collected in my eyes all the sky with its cloudless and the birds who were flying on it. Also, I collected the seaside with its deep and the mountains with its height. I collected in my hair smell of golden hay and the coolness of a spring flowing in the middle of the summer on my lips.

I collected all heart songs under the view of angels, in the middle of the Liturgy and on my lips I picked blue light drops who rise on the icons.

I collected in my lap the nobility of the lilies and the humbleness of the snowdrops. On the top of my fingers I collected the shyness of the poppies who were in the crop field. I collected all the blessing of the rain fell on a dry street of a village.

I collected all the stars of the sky and I gathered burner light of the sun. I gathered all the wind in my coat and in the pockets of my coat I collected smooth rustle of leaf. I gathered, in the swing of my heart the silence of the day who goes. I collected in my eyes the gently light of the full moon who rules silent over the world deepened in sleep.

I gathered all the miss of a heartache and all the tenderness of a caress. I gathered all the shyness of a tear wiped in secret, I gathered the purity of the eyes of children and I collected their smile.

I gathered all the sweetness of the spring and the white of apple flowers.

And I put all that I gathered under your eyes, oh, world!… and I cry trembling because none of them or all together can tell all the beauty of Christ!

(Talita)

Why doesn’t he love me?

Many of us often ask ourselves the question: “Why he\she doesn’t love me?”. We are at an age when feelings burst in our souls even if we want it or not. OK….so far….we can say is nothing serious, right?

Is not sin to love. Is not sin to feel something for a person. It is important how we love. How we manifest this love…and how much we belive in it. Maybe is not the right “form”: “how much we belive in it”  because God is love. He gives love to those who belive in His Word and His Power. Maybe some see love like a form of destiny, you go with the wind, you love, you don’t care about nobody and nothing stops you to continue this beautiful story. Others see love like an ATM, everything consists in the interest of the person. But just a few realize what is true love.

Love is not when the partner looks “hot”. Is not love when somenthing wrong happens and everything cleans out, everything disappear. No. The love between two persons comes naturally. Love…from my point of view, is prayer. It is a song of the heart…which you raise to Him. A no ending score of life in which you do nothing but love.

Well…you’ll say…how to not look good? Well then…where is that attraction…where is the pleasure? Well…you love from pleasure because the one next to you loves you too. The pleasure is just the intensity of the feelings, their power. Right here lies the desire from prayer. And if he doesn’t love me? You still love him!

For some, maybe is absurd to love without the other to feel something for you. For that reason, we do things that lead us to sin. We ambition more for the other to like us. The love statuses often used on Messenger, the hi5 with sad pictures, messages and letters…are just small aids to start a relationship. Really? Why some of the young people appeal  to those and not appeal to a pray? Young people, love doesn’t come out through the internet. God doesn’t loves us just if we have internet. He loves us without conditions. This thing we must do too.

We don’t have to force things. The love between two persons comes naturally. The moment we try to “work” alone at a relationship, is possible to collapse all forever. Love comes when it is sent by God, at its time..not when we want.

(Georgiana)

The eagle and the rooster

An eagle was flying in the hight and he was delighted with the beauty of the world, so he was thinking to himself : „ I’m passing by vast distances: over the mountains and valleys, sees and rivers, over the fields and forests; I see many wild beasts and birds; I see towns and villages and how people live.

But the country rooster doesn’t know anything of all this except the people and the animals from the farm. I will fly to him and tell him about life. And the eagle made a halt on the roof of the farm and he saw how happily and haughtily was the rooster walking between his hens and he thought: „ That means the rooster is contented with his fate, nevertheless I will tell him all I know.”

And the eagle started to tell about all the beauty and wonders of the world. Firstly, the rooster listened carefully to him, but he didn’t understand anything. Because of this, the eagle grew sad and it was hard for him to continue to speak. On his turn, the rooster got bored and it was hard for him to listen to. So, both remained contented with his own fate. Such things happen when a cultivated man speakes with an unlearnd one, even more when a spiritual man speaks with an irreligious one. The first resembles with an eagle and the last with a rooster. Continue reading

Is the abortion justified in case of fetal malformations or in case of a rape?

Why not to abort if I know that my baby will be born with malformations or if he’s resulted from a rape? Is abortion a sin in such extreme situations?

Here are two hard questions that stirs the mind of any christian in this world.

What do we do when we get the heavy news that our future child has been diagnosed as suffering from a congenital abnormality or a syndrome?

The main argument to accept the abortion as a solution is that the child mustn’t lead a life of torment and failures. The second pro-abortion argument is that such a news would destroy the joy of parenthood.

Firstly, to give the answers that are the true solutions to these so delicate problems,we have to be honest with ourselves. When we plan to take an abortion decision of our own child diagnosed with a malformation, for who we really want to make this decision that we consider good ? For the happiness of the baby (not to live a life of torment), or for our own sake, because we don’t want to lead a life of worryness? Continue reading

The puzzled hairdresser

A christian entered in a hairdressing to cut his hair and his beard. While the barber was serving the customer, between them starded an interesting conversation.They talked about many things and discussed various subjects. Finally, they began to speak about God. On this topic, the barber said:

  • I believe that God does not exist.
  • Why do you say that? asked the customer .
  • Just get outside and you will realize that God does not exist. Tell me, if God existed, would be there so many sick people? Would be there so many abandoned children? If God existed, there would be neither suffering nor pain. I can not imagine a loving God who allows to happen this.

The customer thought for a moment, but he didn’t answer because he didn’t want to start a quarrel. The barber finished his job and the customer left the barber’s shop. When he left the barber shop, our Christian saw a man on the street with big, sloppy hair with a tangled, dirty beard. He was dingy and poky.

The client returned to the hairdressing and said to the barber:

  • You know what? Barbers does not exist.
  • How can you say that? asked the barber very surprised. Here I am, I am a hairdresser and I have just trimmed you up.
  • No! exclaimed the customer. Barbers do not exist. If they existed, there would not be men with dirty, long hair and with uncut beard, like the man outside the window.
  • Oh! But barbers exist! That happens when people do not come to me.
  • Exactly! said the client. That’s it! And God exists! But the troubles and suffering happen when people do not come to Him and seek Him for help. That’s why is so much suffering and pain in the world.