Second Thought

Looking again at news and commentary

Des Moines Register

"In times of disaster, such as the one we now face [the flooding in the midwestern United States], it is natural to seek an explanation for what has occurred. Many people see the hand of God in the Great Flood of 1993. People have asked me, 'What is God trying to tell us?' Or they have said, 'God must be angry at us.'

"I, however, do not see God in this disaster. I could not believe in a God who capriciously floods the Earth, wiping away property and person. Why that individual who lives near the river and not I who live away from it? Perhaps God is seeking to teach that individual the folly of living so close to the river! No, I cannot accept a God who is a cruel teacher.

"So where is God? I believe that God is to be seen in the reaffirming resilience which so many people in our community now reflect. Faced with unimaginable personal and family hardship, they are not withering away. Instead, they are persevering. Why? From where do they gain their strength? Some would say, 'From a natural tendency toward self-preservation.' Perhaps so. But as a person of faith, I say, 'God.'

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Party animal? That's not you!
October 25, 1993

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