God’s Ant Farm
So we were talking today about faith and healing, and if it’s possible to obtain the gift of healing or grow that gift. How much of it is faith and how much of it is a gift; do both parties (giving and receiving) have to have enough faith for a miracle to happen.
Of course, we got the usual responses and “cop-outs” — it’s all about what God’s will is, does it bring Him glory, yes it takes faith, maybe we don’t have enough faith, “it’s a wicked and perverse generation that asks for a miracle”, is your heart in the right place, etc.
Before I go on to my point, I want to address the “wicked and perverse generation.” I believe that scripture is not meant to discourage Christians from asking or commanding a miracle. I think that speaks more to a people who say, “if there is a God, let him show us a sign, and then we’ll believe.”
I won’t comment on my beliefs on healing, I wanted to talk more to the statement, “whatever happens, it’s all for the glory of God.” That statement just really bothers me. It didn’t always. I use to be empowered by that statement. It gave me some comfort to think that no matter what happened, it was bringing glory to God. I have seen too much pain and too much suffering in the world to think that God is in anyway glorified by much of what goes on in the world.
I’ve come to accept the world, in some respects as God’s ant farm. For me the metaphor goes without saying that ants are amazing creatures. Most of the time they go unnoticed. I’m sure as I walk around my house, I kill many of them without any thought to their existence. Occasionally, I like to sit and watch them. To watch them carry food, occasionally several ants will be carrying a piece so large that I wonder, “what’s the point.” I have seen ants overcome a spider. I have seen ants drown from the rain. I’ve seen their tiresome lives wasted away building a dirt mound only to be torn down by a lawn mower and then rebuilt by a new generations (I believe the average life span is 45 days).
To sit and watch them, brings me great pleasure. So much, in fact, that after I make way on some of my other project, I plan to build a massive ant farm for my living room. Much of the pleasure that it brings me is to watch them struggle and to watch them build. I could easily move the large piece of food they struggle with for them, but then it wouldn’t be any fun for me to watch them turn in various directions as they pull and push against each other.
I see God’s interaction with us in much the same way. It’s hard for us to imagine how a cruel God wouldn’t just heal everyone if in fact there was such a God. I’m sure if ants had an awareness of us, they might ask a similar question as we plow over their home. I feel the scripture, “God sits in heaven and does whatever pleases Him”, quite fitting for my views on God.
As I sit and watch the ants, I can appreciate that God doesn’t do all the heavy lifting for me. I can appreciate that when I struggle, He’s somehow entertained as I fight through it. That in some way it brings Him pleasure to watch the underdog struggle to victory.
I will always gladly accept a helping hand and the occasional miracle is always welcomed, but if it doesn’t happen, I don’t say it’s happening for the glory of God. I recognize it as entertainment for Him.
I’m not saying that God is not involved in our lives. I think God is minimally involved in our lives. I believe the Holy Spirit, Jesus, and angels are more so involved in our lives than God the Father. That said, it puts greater responsibility on us as a people to take care of the earth which He’s given us, our families, and our fellow man.