On occassion I watch the Red Green Show. I really get a kick out of the montone prayer that they pray. One part is sonething along the lines of, “I’m a man and I can change if I have to.” When it comes to God’s will beiong done humanity often seems to have that monotone sighing attitude. At other times we do our best to interpret God’s will and we even put words in God’s mouth to justify our behavior. At other times we just need someone to blame and at other times we have no logical reason for what has happened so it just becomes God’s will. I notice this the most at funerals or natural disaster events. Folks will say, “Well, it was God’s will.” Sometimes they say, “It was just their time, God needed them in heaven.” The list goes on. Whenever I hear that I always think of a friend of mine who will challenge that notion and ask the hard questions. Why is it God’s will when someone dies? What does it mean when we say something happened because it was God’s will? Is it always God’s will? Does God allow humanity to exercise free will?
I learned to think about God’s will differently in karate class. Sounds weird, I know but hang in there…..
In karate we have a human whom we address as Master. This is the blackbelt who teaches us. We are taught to obey them without question and we automatically obey at the sound of their voice. After I became a blackbelt and was teaching students of my own, I began to see the concepts of master, obedience, and will differently. A master in the martial arts is directly responsible for their lives and safey of their students. Everything we teach, we teach in the hopes that it will save their lives or someone else’s life. We teach them to automatically obey us so that the routine of the motions become familiar and they will hear us when they are fighting in the ring. The instructions we give could help them win. We are also responsible for their attitudes and behaviors. When my students misbehave and mess up the Grandmaster comes to talk to me about it and I am held responsible. Jesus willingly took on the responsiblity for the behavior of humanity. Doing the will of God is not being enslaved to a harsh master. It is choosing of our own free will to obey the Master who will save our life and our soul. God does not demand of us anything that we cannot do or would harm us. Sometimes it is difficult and sometimes we think we cannot accomplish it but God has asked us to do it for a reason. God loves us and sees for not only for who we are but for who we can become. Just as my human master saw within me the potential to do more and be more so does God. Just as I was trained and pushed to accomplish more in the martial arts, God trains and pushes me to become more and be better in life.
So often God gets the blame for something that humanity has chosen to do. Could God stop it? Sure but why on earth would God want a bunch of enslaved mindless nitwits? God has never imposed uniformity on humanity. God offers grace and the ability to reach the potential that God has given each of us.