When a man’s folly brings his way to ruin,
his heart rages against the Lord.
This is so true of Christians! Why can’t I get a job? Why are my workplaces always so difficult? Why is this ministry by which I serve God filled with so much trouble? Why, when I am devoted to God, am I having so much trouble in my marriage, in my family, with my health, in my church, etc., etc., etc. Doesn’t God keep his promises to bless his children? Doesn’t he reward those who serve him and make sacrifices for him? Why won’t he/can’t he control the behavior of others (especially other believers) who are making my life so difficult? Doesn’t God care? Doesn’t he see what my troubles are? Can’t he be merciful to me? What have I done so wrong?
What we will not do is examine our folly. Sometimes the folly is direct and obvious. I am in trouble at work because I lied about my performance. My marriage is in trouble because of my unfaithfulness. Oftentimes the folly is subtle or the consequences follow folly committed long before. My marriage is in trouble because of my sins committed long before leaving me with disease or in debt. It could be the folly of unwise decisions. I can’t get good work because I decided not to get the education needed when I was able to get it.
The point is that we are always more quick to put blame on someone else, including God, than to own up to our folly. “Bad” things do happen to good people and even because we are doing what is right. Suffering will happen to those who follow God. But suffering is as likely to happen because of our folly. We made foolish decisions; we gave way to foolish behavior, spoke foolishly, panicked foolishly, acted with pride foolishly, doubted God foolishly.
And then we questioned God about his goodness, his faithfulness, his mercy.
Folly leads to folly.
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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By D. Marion Clark. © 2022 Tenth Presbyterian Church. Website: tenth.org