Where is God?
by Janet Stobie
News from Syria makes me cringe. Chemical warfare frightens all of us. Where is God in the chaos, the destruction? I pray, I plead, I beg, “Please God, stop the horror.”
I wait for God’s answer. I hear silence.
I believe God’s Spirit works through us and through others. I believe God is there in Syria, walking with the people. I believe God is there in the international aid that is happening. “Doctors Without Borders” are there. I trust that many other non-governmental organizations, like the Red Cross and the Red Crescent, are there, helping.
The news brings tales of possible intervention by U.S., Britain, and France. I ask, “Is this your wish, God? Do you want us to respond with more death?”
I continue to pray. I continue to pour out my love and compassion for the people of Syria.
I can trust. The prophet Jeremiah reminds us that God has acted in the past to care for the people of Israel when they wandered in the wilderness, or endured conquest and exile. God will act today.
There are also struggles close to home. Family, friends, and native peoples here in Canada, too, live in chaos. We don’t experience open warfare and chemical weapons. Instead, our terror is buried, often hidden. Abuse, neglect, debt, poverty, and hunger all exist here.
Once again I beg God to fix it. I wait for God’s answer.
New laws are passed. Some treaties are ratified. Some children rescued. Food banks are opened. Small steps are taken. God is present. God is acting through us here today. I will continue to pray because I know the story of God’s action.
Thus says the Lord: “The people who survived the sword found grace in the wilderness…I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.” (Jeremiah 31: 2-3)