Most often, we hear and use this question in a negative context, like “Why did this happen to me?” We’ve all been there. Not everything in life goes the way we wish it would. Scripture tells us that rain falls on everyone. When Jesus said that (Matthew 5:45), he meant it in a positive context, that God blesses both those that acknowledge him and those that don’t; but we could also see it the other way. Just as sunshine is there for every person, so rain is part of all our lives as well.
We posted a blog with this title in April that is probably worth rereading. Check it out.
But what if we turned that question on its head, here in the month of Thanksgiving? What if we asked “why” God has blessed us the way he has? We all realize that we live in one of the most wonderful places in the world, and have resources that most other people can only dream about, if their dreams can even reach that far. We also realize that we did absolutely nothing to be born in to the families we have. We enjoy all of this because, for some reason beyond our understanding, God made it so.
Don’t, for a minute, allow yourself to think that your goodness, or the goodness of your parents, had anything to do with it. They, and we, are just as sinful as everyone else. Our righteousness is just as filthy, just as tattered, as anyone’s, no matter what their economic situation.
So, why us? What do we do about it?
First, we should be humbly thankful, understanding that what we have is a gift and that we may not have it tomorrow.
Second, we should ask God how he wants us to use the resources he has given us. It only takes a couple minutes of news to understand that the needs are staggering. Beyond the news, we might consider the needs of the kingdom.
Finally, we should be obedient to what God leads us to do with our wealth of resources, which are not just defined by money. We also enjoy more control over our time and our lives than most cultures. So, whether God asks for our finances, our time, or even our lives, may we obediently lay them on the altar as a pleasing sacrifice to him.
We know we are asking for hard things in answering this question. As a parting thought, please meditate on this from 1 Corinthians 6:19-20:
“Don’t you realize that your bodies are temples for the Holy Spirit of God, who is residing in you, who is the very gift of God? You see, you are not your own. You were purchased at a price.”
A price that only God could pay, the sacrifice of his very self as Jesus on the cross.